The other day, there was a power cut in the house. My first instinct was to switch off the laptop, the only source of power for the iPhone which was, thankfully, fully charged. I know, I know – priorities.
Only then did I think about other practicalities, such as ensuring the windows were closed to keep in the warmth (it was already dark) and wondering where we had a torch. I checked the street, which was in complete darkness, so it clearly wasn’t a local fault – just as well, as I’m the last person you’d want to play around with a fuse box – and Nicole called to tell me that her work had had a brief outage but was back on.
I then googled the council’s telephone number – thank goodness for the iPhone: roughly one hour of internet before civilisation gives way to ferality and cannibalism. They said quite a few streets were out, and referred me to Scottish Hydro – one of many electricity suppliers but responsible for network stuff. So I hopped online to find their number, where an automated message on their doubtless overstretched lines said that our part of Inverness was out and should be back online by 8pm. Good, I could cope that long.
In the meantime, I did a bit of a google for “what to do in a power cut” to see if there were any obvious tips, finding nothing of much use or comprehensibility. I did, however, find that the light of the iPhone provided enough illumination going around the house until I found the torch.
The breakdown of society was averted, however, as the power returned just as Nicole came home. There was another power cut some time later, by which time we’d lit one ring on the gas stove but found that of course you need electricity to power the spark for any other rings, and on top of that we had no matches, and the iPhone doesn’t yet have a “spark” app. Thankfully though the second power cut didn’t last long.
We now have candles and matches on standby. Somewhere…