Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Of Lightning, Medieval Living, and the Zombie Apocolypse

Boy, it's not every day you get to combine all those subjects in one tiny sentence.

Last night we had the Mother of all thunder and lightning storms. I am not exaggerating one bit when I say we sat and watched bolts of lightning from our front window. A couple of them were within a thousand feet. Intense! And the thunder? Rocked. The. House. Fourteen hours later, we’re still without power, but I learned a bunch of cool things in that time.

~ We will survive the zombie apocalypse, thanks to my awesome husband. He had a generator up and running, camping stoves going, and lots of candles and flashlights. I love a man who plans ahead.

~  Living by candlelight (we didn’t run the generator ALL night, just long enough to get dinner and find the candles and flash lights) is an entirely different experience. This was a great perspective check for me since I’m working on something that takes place in the 15th century. I hadn't realized how much darker candlelight is than electric light, or daylight.  Or how strong the smell of that many candles burning (and these weren’t even the much more pungent tallow candles in broad use back then.) And mostly how there isn’t much to do once the sun goes down. Candlelight is really not sufficient for reading or any close work whatsoever.

Also, how hard is it to get up in the dark and not be able to turn on any lights?? To have to fumble and bumble to the flashlights and use those to light the candles and have to boil water on the camp stove. Oy. (Again, we didn’t want to run the generator too early and wake our neighbors up. Although, come to think of it, they might have wandered over and begged for coffee.)

Anyway, it was a very timely glimpse into the realities of living without electricity.

And an even better shakedown for the Zombie Apocalypse.


Mary Hershey said...

I'm totally going to ask to borrow Mark next black-out. He is incredibly handy!!! Can the generator run a flat iron?

Was just listening to an interview on NPR about home life before electricity-- they mentioned that very same thing that it was hard to do anything in the evenings.
I would miss reading bad.

Glad your world has settled back to normal!