Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Gone Dark For A While

That's literal. Hurricane Irene came in on Saturday night. That's when my power went out. It is now Wednesday afternoon, and I am still without power. The daytime is filled with reading outside and reading inside and eating dry cereal or bread. The nighttime is filled with candelight card games and watching DVDs on the laptop, hoping the battery lasts. It's not so bad except that tomorrow I begin the Fall semester, and I cannot be without access to the internet if I want to be able to teach my classes efficiently. That means more trips to the library, where I am now, to use the wifi. Some people have live wires, poles on cars, and water through their homes. I don't have it so bad, and I'm thankful we are safe.


LIPA sent me a bill today. According to their recording, they are working around the clock to get the power back on. According to the news this afternoon on Channel 7, the work crews go home at night so they can do a good job the next day. They have closed all of their offices, they say to work on getting the power back, but we all know it's because they are warding off the storming of their offices.

LIPA is a utility monopoly. What consequences do they face for not getting the power back more quickly? None. We have no other power company to choose over them. They have no competition.

So when I saw the bill in my email inbox today, I almost blew a gasket. It's a good thing I'm in the library so I couldn't scream.

Instead, I wrote them an email. I explained how I am appalled that they would send out a bill of collection while not sending power through the lines. I told them I would pay them when I got my power back. Which really isn't helpful for me because if I don't pay, they simply won't put my power on anyway. See how there aren't any consequences? Still, the email made me feel better. Kind of.

Have I mentioned that we probably won't have power until Friday or the weekend. Or maybe early next week?

So if I get a chance to update between classes while I use my work computer, I'll be back. Otherwise, it's lights out.

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