Doing without Electricity

We pride ourselves on our lack of technology and unnecessary appliances at the cabin. But truthfully, over time improved cell signals have enabled some devices to creep into use. I will admit to occasionally checking email myself. And then there was the arrival of wireless Internet at the bait shop. Suddenly the trip for the morning papers took longer than before.

But all that's a moot point without electricity. When the storm took out our power the other night, little did we know that days later we would still be managing without it. The smartphones were the first to go. The storm hit in the evening, when the devices were already depleted from searching for distant signals. Common cell phones fared better. We all switched to airplane mode to conserve what little life was left. iPads without a data plan hung in there, but the Kindles were the clear winners – they can go forever without a recharge. Good thing, as reading is a high priority at the cabin.

On the more mundane side of life, we have bemoaned the loss of our fans in the continuing heat, humidity and lack of wind. But the lake has served to cool us off. Opening the fridge is severely restricted, and has been supplemented with a cooler of ice. We normally grill most of our meals anyway, and have been using up our fresh fruit and salads. By chance, my son brought his camp stove – that's our next option. And thank heavens for the old fashioned outhouse… Without electricity, we have no water pump.

And then there are the creative solutions. We have swapped the usual evening board games for 20 Questions. Booklights and headlamps are in demand for nighttime reading. Our son, the newly minted electrical engineer, fashioned a recharger out of batteries and a dissected charging cord. Since it produced smoke, we opted not to plug in any of our precious devices. We patiently awaited my husband's arrival today, as his car held an electric converter. Although we earlier poked fun at our neighbor who recharged her iPhone in their truck, the idea has since become more appealing. If this keeps up tomorrow morning, we're going to plug in our coffee maker. Communicating with the outside world can wait. There is only so long we can go without our morning caffeine.

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