The Great Blackout of 2011

You may have been wondering where I have been this past week.

Well, it's like this.

Arizona got hit with a terrific cold spell.

I mean really cold.

Take a look at the fountain in the courtyard.

Now before all you Northeners start saying that you feel no pity for us because you had all that snow, listen up.

There was a huge power surge from everyone cranking up their furnaces trying to stay warm and then...


Transformers were blowing left and right. It started OUTSIDE of our park, but once the problem hit this park's antiquated electric lines, it was a nightmare.

We were without electricity for over 48 hours. We have no generator. Our battery was so low that it couldn't start our propane furnace. Thus, no heat.

We woke up the other morning to 40 degrees in our trailer!

On Wednesday morning when we first lost the electricity, Jim thought WE blew a whole line in our trailer. Because we were getting some electricity.

My friend Judy called and said, "Do you have electricity? This may sound funny, but we have a 'wee bit' of electricity."

So we figured it was a Brown Out.

But then soon it turned into a complete Black Out.

Okay, I admit, the first day it was kind of fun without electricity.

Due to the loss of electricity, the Watering Hole (dance from 4 to 6 pm) was canceled. One of our friends has a motor coach with a generator, so they had heat. We decided to bring the Watering Hole to their place! We brought our own booze and snacks and partied hard. We ended up ordering pizzas and went back to our collective cold houses.

Jim and I crawled under 5 blankets and snuggled up. It was quite toasty except when it was time to sit on that cold toilet seat in the middle of the night!

Thursday morning and we still didn't have any heat. A lot of us bundled up and sat around outside my trailer in the sunshine to grab some heat. Here Kathy and Judy are trying to get a suntan on their legs. Note their hands in gloves!

We noticed the electric company working on a nearby transformer. We called them the "Val Vista Village People."

Which then lead me to think about the Village People.

And the song "YMCA".

And it didn't take much prodding for my husband and friends to spell it out.

The park provided food for those people without electricity. Here are volunteers Lynn and Nelda telling people about the free lunch.

We hitched a ride with them to the ballroom to grab our free food.

People waiting for their free lunch.

Lynn handing out the food.

A free lunch.

Into the second day of no electricity it started to lose its sense of adventure. The park was doing what it could by providing breakfast, lunch, and dinner to those who did not have power, but people who DID have power were also grabbing food because, hey, waving a free food sign in front of a senior and you're just asking for trouble.

The park had SOME electricity and were alternating the power grid throughout the park; but where WE were there was NO electricity from Wednesday morning till Friday morning. Then it was on for a few hours, then off, and finally we've had power since Friday night. Not at FULL power, but power none-the-less.

This is what I've learned from this experience.

  1. My friends have all be great and gathered together to help each other out in times of need. We've passed propane heaters around to each other, and those who HAD electricity offered their small cramped spaces to those of us who were cold.
  2. I don't appreciate enough what I have, and I don't have a lot. But heat is a good thing.
  3. People get grouchy pretty quick when they don't have the basic necessities of life.
  4. Saying, "It's REALLY COLD HERE!" is all relative depending on who you are saying it TO!

 It was a real slap in the face the other day to get our electric bill in the mail! I just may wait a few days to pay that baby!

I am way behind in reading everyone's posts. I do apologize. I will  be reading, but may not comment on all of them. My son came in for a visit the other day and is here for a week. So we will be taking him around and showing him the sites.
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