Out of the Dark

Power has returned, at least form our small portion of the world here in Fairfax County.  Had commiserated about not buying more ice when I had the chance to, came back home after picking wife unit up, entered the house and lo and behold the house was cool and the items we have lefty on before the storm knocked out power were back on.  So 18 hours without power is our experience.

Not so for the subdivision that surrounds us, on in which there are still overhead wires:  I could hear as I walked to the nearest 7eleven to pick up the Sunday newspaper, the distant and no so distant hum of generators, meaning no power.  And incredibly the news reports that for some living in this area, they may not have their power for another week!!!

Spent much of yesterday sheltered at Wegmans keeping my laptop and cell phone charged.   The store itself did a booming business as unlike the traditional  grocery, meats & veggies grocery store model, it also sells food to eat on premises, a counterintuitive feature, but one that brought hordes of desperate for coffee and prepared food to the store.

There’s lack of gasoline to purchase too.  Many stations had to/are still shut down simply because without power, they cannot pump gasoline. Many fast food and beverage stores also were closed/assume are still closed too as without power….. Wonder if someone is going to do an economic impact study of this storm for NOVA afterwards? 

What gasoline stations are open (with their own power source) are swamped with line of cars reminding me of the gas crisis in the 70’s.  One of our vehicles came home Friday night with a 3rd of a tank left and after driving wife unit to and from work in the heat, gas was low. 

Now today, she has a rare Sunday off and she wanted to go to some class a bit away that she usually can’t go to on a Sunday. Cautioned her about the gas and suggested she fill the tank just with enough to get by, at the closest station, even though its owner hiked the price of gas by 6 cents a gallon in 24 hours.

With that in mind, she left and then returned shortly afterwards, upset about not being able to find gasoline, and not being able to drive out to this class. 

This highlights a very ugly side of wife unit, a sense of entitlement and narrow-mined selfishness.  Sure its an inconnveinence not to have enough gasoline to drive out there, but considering the greater picture, we are much better off now at this moment than many, many others in this area.  We have our power:  our house is comfortably cool, we need not throw out food that has spoiled and unlike for example, a former colleague who departed on the eve of the storm (called BTW, a derecho) for a week’s family vacation, only to learn a large tree fell and went through their family room, our house is still whole.  

Wife unit is over 50 and one would think a bit of maturity would have sunk in by now.  Bet she’ll be a terror should she live long enough to hit the 80’s.

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2 Responses to Out of the Dark

  1. Aussie Emjay says:

    It’s been a mess hasn’t it! That storm was so ferocious. It sounded worse than the 2 hurricanes I’ve seen in this area. I’m glad you got your power on. We were very lucky and did not lose power – it flickered a lot but held on. We lost our internet, our back neighbor lost a smallish tree which fell onto his neighbor’s garage and the manservant’s bus route to work was disrupted and detoured because of fallen trees. But, as you say, given the bigger picture of widespread power outages expected for up to a week in these temps, and the loss of life and structural damage from fallen trees, those things are pretty trifling. A woman I work with has been told her power will be back at 8am on Friday – it sounds so strange that Pepco can give an exact time…. we’ll see how accurate *that* is! A guy in the office had a huge tree go through his roof and ceiling and basically destroyed a room and someone not far from where I live had a deck basically ripped off the side of their house.

    I saw that some hotels were charging 5 & 6 hundred dollars for a night!! How terrible!

    • Not surprised by the price-gouging: I recall when traveling on business to Detriot, when things went south there due to weather, the prices for a refuge (hotel) room shot up dramatically. There’s a gas station nearby whihc raised its proce per gallon on regular about 6 or 7 cents a gallon from the pre-derecho price.

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