Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vegan Unplugged

In 2007 a neighbor's tree limb came down and took out the power to our house and cost us about $1,000 to repair.
Well, it happened again Friday morning. Around 6 or 6:30am a loud bang woke me from my sleep and I saw the house shake and a flash. I was sleeping with Josie in her room so I woke up to looking down the hallway toward the back of the house. I thought Rob had dropped a big piece of furniture or something, but he was asleep in our room until I shouted. He investigated and found yet another huge tree branch had fallen from the same tree and taken out the power and cable line (we don't own a TV, but use the cable line for our internet access and Rob works from home and it completely dependent on connectivity). Our power wasn't knocked out because the power line wasn't severed, but that meant a live line was on the ground in our yard and across the little alley behind our house.
I was worried about school kids not seeing the downed line, but it was pretty obvious. We called Ameren immediately to come shut of the power (which they did to our house, but the line on the ground was still live...please, please don't touch downed power lines!) and then called several electrician to come out and repair the power line attached to our house. It was amazingly difficult to find someone to do the work, but luckily Remco came out in a timely manner and did the work. Then the inspector came out and said it was attached too close to our second story windows and the electrician had to come back and redo the work (he had put it back up exactly the way it had been originally so I guess not really his fault, I don't know if this is a new rule, but I suspect it is because it wasn't inspected after the 2007 incident). Then Ameren took their time to restore power and Comcast didn't make it out until the next afternoon, but it made think about all the people without power recently due to adverse weather (this did not happen during a storm or anything, just a little rain overnight with no high winds) and the people who spend their lives restoring power.
It also made me want to get out my copy of Vegan Unplugged. It is a fabulous resource for feeding oneself without power and has great tips for emergency preparedness (for anyone, not just vegans). Luckily, we didn't loose anything in our refrigerator or freezers during the power outage. When it become clear that our power would be out for a prolonged period of time, our neighbors set up an extension cord for us to tap into our power. We are lucky the property with the tree is now owned by our fabulous neighbors Margie and Rick (who even offered to pay for the repairs) who have already had an arborist come out to figure out how to deal with the tree. We didn't get to try out any of the recipes in Vegan Unplugged. We all went out to eat downtown since it was an early dismissal from Parker's school and Rob already had lunch plans with friends, but I did stock up on supplies and I'll be reviewing some of the recipes soon.

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