It has been two hours since my family and I had electricity in our house- almost 34 hours of coping without what I now regard as such a luxury. But during those dark times, I learned to appreciate a few things.
Prior to the outage, each member of the household was engrossed in front of a computer/phone/tablet, rather than each other’s presence. In the midst of summer online courses, work deadlines, and relaxing from an exhausting day by the idle scrolling through social media, we all forgot the importance of family. The animated voices of actors on TV livened the living room; quite ironic as conversations among our five-person household seemed dull and dead.
While the outage ensued, we rediscovered the humour and subtle concern that were absent in our day-to-day conversations. Patience prevailed, unlike the rush of impatient remarks that surfaced within attempts in starting simple dialogue. Not only that, but our family ate dinner together after several days (or even weeks) of missing each other. My brother and I are often out, thus we sometimes miss out on having dinner with our mom. Due to submissions at work, my dad arrives quite late in the evening, even early morning, thus we almost always miss him completely.
We never expected it would take a power outage to bring us closer together; not to mention, value each other’s presence.
After my dad dropped me off at a gig in Richmond during the rainy Saturday evening, already a few hours after the outage began, he started his 30-minute drive to the other side of the Alex Fraser bridge. As he took the exit onto Nordel Way just after the bridge, the car skid, causing him to panic and press the brakes- landing him in a nearby ditch. Luckily, no one was hurt- except his wallet after receiving a fine for overspeeding.
Tonight, we ate a late dinner at Richmond (we just seem to love that city this weekend). A scrumptious dinner paired with enjoying each other’s company made the seemingly (here we go again) dark time enjoyable. As we approached our townhouse complex an hour or so after driving in the rain, I admit, I was half praying and half skeptical that the lights would be on.
Lo and behold, it was.
I rejoiced in seeing the refrigerator light again and salvaged whatever food was still edible. Lights not used at the moment, I immediately turned off. But before I reached to charge my dying laptop and recuperate my phone (can’t wait to see my data bill), I was reminded to take all that I’ve learned to heart: electronic gadgets are rechargeable.
Family ties- well, they’re rechargeable, too.