Tuesday, July 10, 2012
1. A generator. This is indispensable. It kept the fridge running, so most of the food was saved. It ran fans in the basement to cool us off. It charged our electronics and kept the Fios working. If you are anywhere near an area where a power outage may occur, please invest in a generator as soon as possible! Even if it just sits in the garage for years (like this one), you will be eternally grateful that you have it when you need it.
2. A gas stove. This means that we could cook food by simply using a match to light the burners. We also used a double boiler quite effectively to re-heat food. Worked just like a microwave. By having a means of cooking, we were able to maintain a fairly normal meal routine.
3. A large basement. We moved all the mattresses into the spacious basement which allowed us to sleep quite peacefully in the relative cool rather than spending hours tossing and turning in the muggy sauna that was the upper level.
4. Knowledge of the septic system. I always knew that if the power went out, you didn't flush the toilets. I figured that was standard knowledge. I have since discovered that not everyone knows that trick. Luckily, my household did. So there were no showers. No dishwasher. No water down the drain. And very few flushes. We got along fairly well (myself better than others since I had friends who let me use their shower) until Monday evening. It was at that point that our power return estimate was pushed back to Saturday. Tuesday morning the truck came out, and we had the septic pumped. Thank goodness we did! Apparently, we were right at the brink of backing up, and trust me, you do not want a backed up septic system. After the septic was pumped, we were told we had about 5 days of normal usage before it would need to be pumped again, i.e. we could flush and shower in the remaining days without power with no fear of backing up the septic.
All in all, I have to say that the power outage had little to no real impact on our lives. True, the kids were a bit bouncier and tempers a bit shorter. I will always count us lucky, however, insofar as we did not have to seek alternate living accommodations. We were able to live out our daily routine without too much hassle.