Sunday was a nice day. The neighbors to one side of me were having a family BBQ, the neighbors behind me were relaxing on their screened-in porch; the other neighbors in this immediate area were gone. I was enjoying a 3-day weekend by doing mostly nothing. I had been on the computer, then read for a while and finally decided that I would take a nice little afternoon nap.
I was jarred awake by the distinct sound that I've come to know so well. Yep, the transformer blew again and it was a sure bet who was responsible. After shutting down my computer safely (its on a battery back-up system), I trudged outside to see where the body or bodies were this time. My neighbors were kidding me about having squirrel BBQ for dinner. The neighbor behind me who had been sitting on her porch said it was the first time she had actually witnessed it....she said a huge ball of bluish white light came off of that pole and it was indeed frightening. I confirmed the body count of one laying at the foot of the pole. I sure wish they would land in another yard for a change but 98% of the time they land in mine, which makes me responsible for disposing of the body. Yuck! I'll admit there's been many times I've been tempted to toss them over the fence (where a MAN lives) and the only things stopping me is that I'm afraid someone will see me doing it and if I'm going to touch it to do that, I might as well go ahead and get rid of the body (logic takes over).
A call was placed to the power company by myself and I'm sure many other neighbors called too. The recording on the phone stated that our problem should be fixed by 10 tomorrow morning. Oh goodie! That's a good 15 hours away. It was just dark enough in my living room that attempting to read a book was difficult. I talked on the phone for a bit then noticed the power company truck. Wow...I was impressed....only two hours from when the call was made! The guy walked into my back yard and located the culprit's body at the base of the pole. It is now completely dark outside.
Well, we waited and we waited and still no power. I couldn't figure it out, since they located the problem right away and its happened so many times before, they certainly have it down pat as to what to do. I began to have scenarios run through my mind as to why it was taking so long.
1. Since its a holiday weekend, they had to call in more crews because they are short-handed.
2. Since its a holiday weekend, they only have an inexperienced crew working and have to call in the experienced guys if something big happens and all the experienced guys are three states away having a last summer vacation.
3.This call interrupted a BBQ and after locating the problem, they went back to finish their dinners first.
4. The truck appearing was nothing more than a facade to get people to quit calling. The "real" crew will show up early tomorrow morning when its light.
5. This was a particularly violent blow-out which fried 1,900 miles of wires and they all have to be replaced.
I got disgusted and went back to bed at 11. I left my bedroom light on so I would know if and when my power came back on. At approximately 1:30 in the morning, I had power.
Now, if you remember it wasn't that long ago that I had back-to-back outages during a weekend due to squirrels. I reported it to a "person of importance" at the power company that time and he said he would definitely look into putting up a squirrel guard which is what we've been asking for in the 37 years I've lived here.....and have yet to receive. Obviously, they still have not put one up even though I was visited by an inspector who stood at the base of the pole and stared skyward at it for more than a few minutes. In all their infinite wisdom, I figure that the power company has decided that it is more beneficial for them to not put up a squirrel guard which would take perhaps an hour or so. Instead they:
1. pay out overtime for their crews to respond on a holiday
2. pay out overtime for their crews to respond during the night or on a weekend
3. lose a substantial amount of money due to the fact that there are hundreds of meters not running during this outage.
So, weigh out the fact of losing much money on one hand.....to paying out a tiny amount for a squirrel guard on the other hand and I can fully understand why they would chose to not put up the guard. These people, after all, have to prove job security and what better way than this.....as if all the storms we get isn't enough. Besides that, if us old folks didn't have stuff like this to complain about, then we might just as well curl up our toes and check out. Half the fun of getting old is the part where you can moan and groan and complain and get away with it. We have earned that right, dad gummit. Hope your holiday weekend was a good one....its winding down now and, like everything else in my life, it went by amazingly fast.