Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Argh!: Episode 2 – The Bane of My Existence or Why Living Rural is So Much Fun

When we moved to our little patch of dirt almost six years ago, it was literally the middle of nowhere—undefined winding dirt road, very little concrete or asphalt, dark nights, ten miles to the nearest grocery store or gas station. Okay, so maybe not as middle of nowhere as some places, but still, it was more rural than anywhere I’ve ever lived, and the kids called it “our desert” because that’s all you could see from our front door. And we had an incredible view of the Superstition Mountains. I loved living out here, despite all the dirt. My only real gripe was we had frequent power and phone outages.

With the urbanization of our area, those outages have come less often. In exchange, we'll be losing our mountain view, we have a heat trap asphalt road running in front of our house (which, I have to admit, is kind of nice when it rains), a lot more traffic in front of our house, and we have street lights. No more clear, starry skies at night. :( So, with all I’ve had to give up, I get a little peeved when the power goes out.

Now, I know it’s expected once in a while, but ours just goes out for freak reasons now. There was the very frustrating incident last September, aka Argh! Episode 1, and then there was last night. At approximately 2 am, my world got very quiet, so of course, I woke up. I was dead asleep too. My husband said there was a pop and then the power went out. Great. This was sounding too familiar.

We looked outside and it appeared we were the only ones without power, and a/c—it had to be 90 degrees last night. Fortunately, due to the previous incident, I had the power company’s number programmed into my phone. After a quick call to them to report it and shutting down my computer, we went outside to investigate.

Just a little FYI: If you don’t have a battery backup for your computer, get one now. It will absorb the shock from a lightning strike and save your electronics. What? Lightning? Yeah. See Argh! Episode 1.

Anyway, everything looked okay on the power pole in front of our house, but upon closer inspection we discovered a barbecued critter lying in front of it. Though my morbid side is very tempted to post photos of the crispy critter, I know some of you are sensitive about that, so I will leave it off, along with the type of critter. But if you’re really interested, feel free to email me, abbyannis (at) earthlink (dot) net, and I’ll send them to you.

The power guy finally came out about 4 am, and we got our a/c back, so I could finally go back to sleep, only to get up again at 6 am to get the kids on the bus. Fun night. :)

Anyone else have a similar experience to share? Or anything else you want to share? Sorry, my question generator is still asleep. I’m going back to bed.


  1. Just... wow. That sucks! I'm sad that your view of the mountains is impeded AND that you had no A/C :(. That's just wrong.

  2. yuck! But.... fun? When I was little the power used to go out all the time. I loved it. The candles and the stories. My mom and I would play clue by candlelight all night long.

  3. Oh, I feel for you. I've been there all too often, sometimes for days at a time. And I've also experienced being powerless for about thirteen days during a northern New York winter.

    Believe me, living without power in the winter is a cakewalk compared to no a/c in the summer. You can't open the fridge, and the only way to cool off is alcohol, taken internally, and mint extract, taken externally.

    At least in the winter your food isn't going bad, and most everyone up there has kerosene or wood stoves already. Bathing can be a little, er, refreshing, but you need something to wake you up from all the kerosene fumes... ;)

    Sorry about your mountains, Abby, that stinks. Almost as much as the crispy critter? Yuck! :)

  4. Oh, wow!

    *hugs* and *barbeque sauce* ;-)

    I hate it when the power goes out. It's amazing how much we rely on it.

  5. Oh noes! And all I want to know is if it was a porcupine. My mom would like the quills, crispy or not. *wink* ROTFL.

    But seriously. Sorry about the episode.

  6. Oh no! That really sucks. I think losing the view of Superstition Mountains may be the worst. My dad lived in that area for a few years and when I visited I thought the vista was fabulous, plus the old mining lore. Perfect place for a writer, you lucky thing.

  7. Crispy critter!
    Crispy critter!
    Crispy critter!
    Crispy critter!

    Please send photos - Jenna8 @ charter . net

  8. We live up in the mountains of So Cal, we used to lose power constantly! Now, a ton more people and a lot less headaches as far as power, cable, and the like. Now I just have JERKS.
    LOL. HELP.

    Poor little crispy critter =(

    a guy died right out in front of our work the other day. He's a bum, and assumed he was asleep. 100 degree temps and he was there for several hours before someone checked. I'm NASTY, I took a picture. Sad, no one really cared, said he's a bum he most likely was a drug addict or an alcoholic, DOESN"T MATTER, he was a human being.
    I took his picture (with permission of the police) and have prayed for that old man for days now.

    =( sad huh?

  9. Becca: Thanks for the sympathy! We're all good now. Well, except for the mountains, but I can still see the top half until they start building. :)

    Suzanne: I'm not very fun when I get woken up prematurely. And the kids had school today so I was worried about them being grouchy from sleep deprivation. They were still grouchy. Oh well.

    Tere: Thirteen days with no power? The longest we've gone is just under 24 hours in July two years ago. You win. Sorry, I don't have a prize. :D

    Danyelle: Yum. Nothing like electrifried critter and BBQ sauce. ;)

    Elana: So sorry. No porcupines. Apologize to your mom for me. I don't think we have those this far south. Could be wrong, but I've lived her my whole life and never seen one. This critter was of the more domestic variety.

    Tricia: I agree. I love the Superstitions. There are several small mountain ranges in the valley, but the Superstitions have always been my favorite. Truly purple mountain majesty. I still have a nice clear view on my drive home. Gotta take it where I can get it. :)

    Jenna: They're coming your way. :)

    Tami: During the housing boom we had a major influx of new residents from out-of-state. Not that there's anything wrong with people from out-of-state, but none of them know how to use their gas pedals. Makes me crazy! Sad about that guy. :( So sweet of you to pray for him. You're amazing!

  10. Oh, what a night! No, apart from being up with sick kids or other related complaints I have never had a night like yours. Not fun for you

  11. But, Abby, that's part of rural charm. *biting off the growing chuckle* Didn't you know that? When the lights/power/computers/TVs/telephones go off, that's when everyone comes together.

    I live in the city now, where we don't have that problem. But I also don't know a single neighbor, either.

    I miss the rural areas.