Monday, July 14, 2014

When the Lights Go Dark & the Night Quiet

Yesterday night around eight o'clock, our entire area had a blackout.

At first, there was that instant of "Wait. *eyebrow furrow* What just happened? What's going on?"

And then everyone goes "Oh. Blackout. Mmm. *nose wrinkle*"

After that comes the point where we look at each other and say "Well then. What do we do now?"


I will fully admit, I like blackouts.

Not the long-term kind where you start to worry about the food in the fridge and wonder how you'll get your car out of the garage for work {just writing that out, I felt really spoiled compared to those in the world who live everyday with no electricity. like, wow, Sam. first world problem, much? sigh}.

But the kind that last an hour or two... those blackouts are nice. Because they slow us down and focus our attention to something other than a brightly-lit screen. They limit our excess and remind us what we can live without. They increase face-to-face conversations and quiet the sounds of the world around us.

You don't realize how much ambient noise there is everywhere until it all stops. The constant hum of the refrigerator, the ticking of the cuckoo clock, the faint buzz of the miscellaneous electronics nearby.

I find the silence peaceful and the darkness comforting. I'm sure I'd feel differently if I didn't happen to be at home when the blackout occurred, since I'd then be worrying about running into something or tripping or walking into a wall. But when home and the lights go out, I know where everything is and I know we've got emergency lights spaced throughout the house, so it's all good.

Now if we could achieve this kind of calm and stillness without major power failures, that'd be great.

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