Hurricane Diaries, part 2: Don’t Drink the Water

Almost 72 hours since the Tree of Damocles fell against the overhead wires, cutting off our power. There was a little progress today; a van from an electrical contractor drove in, coiled up the two lengths of wire that had split on Tuesday, hung them from their respective poles, and put red “caution” tape around them. I stopped the van on its way out, but the two employees within couldn’t tell me anything about when they expect the tree itself to be cut down, which I assume is a prerequisite to restoring our power.

It’s a bit fraught, looking out one’s window and seeing a tree hanging at a 45-degree angle to the ground, supported by the cables and wires that bring this fair city light. (Okay, it’s a “town” not a “city”, and “blah” not “fair”.) At some point, the wires have to give, right?

Still, today was much better than yesterday. After suffering bouts of nausea and blinding headaches on Wednesday, we concluded the tap water has gone bad (or that the CO detector had crapped out and that we were gonna die soon), so we moved over to the bottled stuff, as well as the water we bottled before the storm hit. No symptoms today, so yay.

Internet service has been up and down, but that’s better than yesterday’s total outage. Lines at the gas stations are hours long, as people are desperate to fuel their home generators, so we’re not making any more “let’s get out of the house” treks, except for the 2.5-mile round-trip to the public library, where they have charging stations set up.

I’ve gone down there the past two days for an hour or so at a time to charge the iPads, laptops, and an external battery that charges the phones up pretty quickly. I also, of course, sit around and read while I wait.

I knocked off Fifth Business this afternoon, took a break with Gary Panter’s Dal Tokyo collection, then took up The Manticore. At this point, I don’t know how I won’t finish Robertson Davies’ Deptford Trilogy by Monday. Especially if our internet coverage stays spotty.

I cannot begin to explain the allure of these novels, but they’re a blast. Davies’ narrators and his cast of characters are utterly enchanting.

And now, back to stoking the wood-burning stove. (I put a fresh 9-volt battery in the CO detector, btw.)

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