Saturday, 9 August 2014

No Power

I awoke this morning to find that the electricity in my apartment was only half working, a classic brownout. I went online to see what I could find out, but Enmax, the local power supply company, has nothing posted on their website. I called the trouble support line and they told me there was a cable failure just down the block from my building and that the whole neighbourhood was out, or at least halfways out. It looks like it might take most of the day to repair.

I immediately thought about what might happen when I needed breathing assistance. In fact so much of my life will be come dependent on mechanical assistance as time goes by. I will need things like a Bi-Pap breathing machine and possibly things like Dynavox, along with the lifts and such. Fortunately most of these things use a recharge battery system, but not the Bi-Pap machines.

Even now, 3 hours after getting out of bed, there is no full power on any of my circuits. My bathroom lights don't work, or at least hardly work. My refrigerator and freezer are humming along at low power and the lights in the rest of my apartment might as well not be on at all, so I have them off. Where there are no windows to let in light, it's dark. I can't even go out. The elevator is not working. I am stuck here at home.

Fortunately one of my friends is here today to help me with some household maintenance things. We've fixed a broken moulding strip on my front door and added a grip bar to allow me to more easily close that door from my wheelchair. He helped me rearrange the closet in my spare bedroom, tidying up the wine bottles and straightening up the closet contents. Now he is across the street getting some lunch for me; I cannot cook without a stove. It doesn't matter; am not alone. There are always people around me, helping me.

I rely on my friends and family, even more than I rely on my electricity. I am constantly aware of how full, or empty, my life is, or would be, with and without them. They make me laugh, listen when I am unhappy, hold me when I am in tears, support me each day. Electricity can't do that.

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