When I went to see my family in the 'burbs, my intent was to come home the Tuesday before New Years. Monday, Emily called and let me know that with the the ice storm came a power outage through much of Peoria. It was widespread and no one was sure when it would come back on. On Tuesday, it was saying that the power was supposed to come back on at 1:00. So, I decided to head home. When I got home at 4:00, still no power. With the sun going down, Emily and I emptied the refrigerator and freezer, packed a bag, and headed for her parents house in Morton. Good food, a warm house, a fire, light, television, a puzzle. It was a comfortable evening. Wednesday morning, the new update was 7 or 8pm that night. I headed back into town to pack another day of clothes and get some things to do and went to Kari's house to hang out in warmth. Emily, Kari, Amanda, and I went to dinner. I packed my bag and hoped that I would be able to head home after dinner. At 8pm, the update was 11pm, and the decision was made for me to stay at Kari's house for the evening. Emily headed back to her house. An hour later, the update changed to 10pm Thursday evening. I was beginning to think that I would never get to go home! Thursday morning, the time frame had actually moved up to noon, and I was finally feeling optimistic. Noon came and went and then it said that the time for the power to come back on was "undetermined." I decided that I did not want to grocery shop on New Year's Day, so I went to lunch, went to the grocery store to replace some groceries (Kari had said that I could keep my groceries at her house if I needed to), and then headed to the apartment to get some things done while it was light and to pack another bag (at this point, I was not optimistic any longer that I would be able to stay at the apartment). While I was home, the power came back on around 3pm. I called Emily and we settled in to settling in for the evening. Two hours after the power came back on, the heat had caught up, the refrigerator was clean (why not clean it while it was practically empty), laundry was underway, and I had mostly unpacked from being gone for one and a half weeks.
And then the refrigerator stopped working. Yes, you read that right. 4:30 on New Year's Eve. I called the emergency number and someone from maintenance called back. This is how the conversation started, "Ma'am, do you have a husband there, or is it just you?" Now, I don't know much about taking care of house stuff, but it still made my blood boil. I told him it was just me, and he proceeded to "teach" me how to check the breaker box. Anyway, long story short, our refrigerator was kaput. Dead. Luckily, they came in on New Year's Day and replaced the coil and we again had a working fridge! I may have enjoyed New Year's Eve from the comfort of my bed starting at 7pm and going to bed at 10pm, but there is no proof that I wasn't out partying in the New Year.
Now, all of this happened at the end of the year, so I knew I was going to be looking through my blessings jar, so the whole week, I had in the back of my mind to look for blessings in the midst of this craziness.
I had a warm place to stay the whole time the power was out.
I was able to catch up with a friend while staying at her house.
I had people to call when the refrigerator broke.
My apartment was still standing and I was able to go back to it (I was talking to a client this week and she told herself when the power was out that at least it wasn't a fire, or a tornado, or a hurricane, or an earthquake. Things could have been so much worse).
I have money to replace my groceries and to buy lunch and dinner while the power was out.
So, all in all, the week did not go according to my plan, but I really had no reason to complain. I did. I wasn't happy about the situation. And I had a cold all week, which made me not enjoy the change in plans. But now, it seems like a distant memory. And one day, we'll look back at "The Power Outage of 2015" and laugh at all the stuff that happened.
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