Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Loss of Power

From July 2016.........................

It began as a fairly typical Saturday. Woke up, made coffee, made some food. Started a new t.v. series  while making two dresses. Started a bottle of wine while relaxing with my dog. Watched the world burn outside my windows in the 90 degree heat that had descended over the city. Tino and I were feeling pretty cozy about life, the universe, and everything until suddenly the T.V. cut out. I had knocked my wifi over earlier, so I wasn’t that worried, thought maybe it was just the router restarting again, but then I noticed the air had cut out, and the fans and the lights and I realized we’d lost power.

I think I’ve been dreading this day for roughly two years since I had moved into this apartment. Because everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING, in this build run on electricity. I wouldn’t even be able to make coffee, which is really the greatest injustice of them all. Knowing this, about two months after  I moved in and just before winter I put in some basic provisions for eventual potential power outage. This included some Bunsen burners, peanut butter and candles. This is basically what I had going for me when I lost power.

I buttoned down my place, pulled all the blinds to try to keep the cool in my apartment for as long as possible, opened a bottle of wine and took the dog to the roof. Technically the dog is not allowed on the roof but this was an emergency.

We chilled out on the rooftop, keep calm and watching and waiting as the news started to trickle in about what had happened. My landlord sent out a note that the transformer on the block up had blown and the entire neighborhood was without power. Good times.

The power company said electricity would be returned by 10 p.m.

Hellion came by because his shop had closed due to the power. We debated what to do and I thought, fuck it, if the power is going to be back on by 10 let’s go to a movie. Of course, we packed the dog for the movie because you take the dog when you lose the power.

Tino went into a backpack, we hit a bar and had a drink then shuffled over to the theater to get tickets or Ghostbusters as that seemed like it would be a good time. Aside from me, Hellion and the dog there were only about six other people in the theater. The film came on and after 20 minutes of trying really hard to suspend my disbelief I fell asleep (this is not to say the movie was good or bad, just that they made way to many assumptions and didn’t build characters well enough, making the what’s and whys of the entire piece difficult to follow).  I slept. Hellion woke me two hours later telling me it was a great show and he liked it. We hit the road back to my place to make it easier for him to get to his place and, to my annoyance, I trundled up the five flights of stairs to my apartment.

The power was l out.

I had a missed call from my power company telling me the power would be back on by 5 a.m. There was nothing for it at that point but to try to get as comfortable as possible and sleep which is what I did. Apparently Tino was upset by the weather as he mad a point of getting as close to me as possible, even though he is a tiny hot water bottle and I kept pushing him away. He would not be dissuaded though, and throughout the night I kept waking to find a warm Ewok pressed against me no matter how much I tried to make it clear I needed space from is 102 degree ambient warmth. Every  hopeful, I woke up at 5 am. The power was still out. I had a new call from the power company telling me the power would be back on  by 10 a.m. I tried really hard to go back to sleep.

I woke at 10:15 with a new message telling me the power would be back on by 2. I used the Bunsen burner and spent the better part of an hour and a half making water hot for coffee. I did manage to make coffee so I am calling that a win. At 11:30 I had a new call telling me the power would be on by 2. At noon I decided Tino and I would need to take action because there was no way that we could be in the apartment at 1 p.m. when the temperature outside would hit 97. So I packed up the dog, grabbed the backpack, and we went down the five flights to the street.

The weather is deathly hot and I was covered in sweat after a block. Tino was panting like the world would end. We hit the bus and headed towards somewhere, anywhere, that would have air con and food. Now we sit, him in full on Ninja Pup stealth mode and me as a writer, drinking a bottle of wine and wondering when the power will come on.

I explained to my waitress “I’m escaping the heat, we lost power in the area.”

“Really, what area?”

“I’m up in East Harlem.”

“Get out. Wait, there is no way we lost power.” Turns out the waitress had flown in and gone straight to work so hadn’t been to her apartment. I showed her the map.

“Shit. That’s my apartment.”

“Welcome back to New York.”

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