When I rolled over on Sunday morning, I expected to see the clock radio glaring its red numbers at me. Disappointment awaited. What to do now with no electricity and no internet?
What I did first was to take my phone to the car, plug it in, and nudge around online. Alas, no good news was forthcoming.
Sue wasn't long asleep either, but she remembered our little power pack (booster). That's one thing that it is good for – boosting the car on cold winter morns. Mind you, that is usually an indication that the battery is wearing down, but it gives us time to act.
I had forgotten that we could plug a power receptacle into that and then plug our USB chargers into the receptacle. This would enable us to keep our devices going. Although low on reserves from the outset, it worked for us for as long as we needed it, which turned out to be more than 48 hours later.
As you might guess, it does not have sufficient juice to run a coffee maker. Maybe the bbq would work? Nope. Not enough heat to bring the kettle to a boil. Sigh.
Sue, especially, had a real pounder by then. When coffee failed to eventuate via the bbq, AC was able to ingest a Coke and thus alleviate his headache, but it was not a solution that was palatable for Beloved.
Meanwhile, Shauna was also in a bit of a fix over at her place, but when she heard that power had been restored to her seniors residence, she set off. They gave her coffee and made her toast. She brought home ice and a stronger power pack than our ancient device. More importantly, she brought Sue (mostly Sue) a carafe of tea. Tea also contains caffeine, and Sue loves her tea, so the headache crisis was over – for Sunday, at least.
Surrounding towns were regaining electricity. Surely, we would soon follow. Monday morning came. No glaring red numbers yet again!
You may recall that Sha was at the ready with that newer and supposedly more powerful, power pack. Thunder and tarnation: it wasn't up to the task either. What is it about coffee machines? The charger can boost a car but a coffee maker is too much for it?
We all trundled off to Perth with Sue in the throes of another major pounder.
We were served with the most scrumptious English muffins known to humanity. And there was coffee: not great coffee, but it contained the vital ingredient – caffeine. The headache was defeated once again. More ice was obtained, and an even bigger power pack unit was brought home. We would be sure to have coffee on the morrow – Tuesday – for sure.
And so, we limped through Monday.
And kept limping into Tuesday still with no glaring red numbers.
But Shauna had that big unit. We would be saved. Nope. It handled her curling iron well, but . . . but it was not enough to brew that %$#& coffee.
Fortunately, Sue had saved cold coffee from the previous day. She gagged it down. Headache mollified once again.
Canadian Tire posted a message that they would open in a very limited way. They had propane for camp stoves available.
"Sue: do we still have our camp stove, the one from 20 years ago?"
Now Sue's reluctance to ever discard anything can be a tad irksome at times, but, by golly, we still had it, and she knew just where it was. We had brought it with us across province 17 years ago and had never used it since, but had it we did.
Off the Canadian Tire hied (sorry, spellcheck, it is a word) AC. It was mostly dark inside, and one would just let in the doorway where ladies stood, ready to take orders and go off to find what one required. They didn't have to search for AC, however, for the propane cannisters were in a bin right by the door.
I flashbacked about 30 years as they ran my credit card through one of those ancient credit card imprinting machines. The technology worked then, and it works now. That's all that they would take, by the way: just a credit card – not cash, not a cheque, and not a debit card.
We set up the stove on the edge of the back deck, and gingerly lay our old camping kettle on the burner. It worked! Tea for Sue and instant coffee for me.
We would survive for another day.
Then, I received a text that we would be without electricity for another two days. Sigh. But at least with the camp stove, we were better equipped to struggle our way through. We could make coffee, tea, soup, and eggs.
Fortunately, that prediction was wrong, and the lights came back on just two hours later.
Next morning, Wednesday, those red numbers shone brightly. The bathroom light came on when I stumbled through the doorway, and the coffee perked. Just as coffee is meant to do.