Water woes

On Saturday, I got an infinitely small taste of what some of those affected by Hurricane Sandy have gone through and, in some cases, are still going through.

The day started as most any other Saturday, meaning I had a huge to-do list, especially considering the many gifts I'm making for Christmas. I did a little here, a little there, and by about 10:30 that morning, I went out to the garage to do some painting projects I had lined up for the day. I figured I'd get the painting done then clean the cats' litter boxes before taking my shower for the day.

So I painted away. Around noon, just as I headed into the house  to wash off the black and brown paint covering my hands (and the lubricant I'd sprayed all over them to help with removing the paint from my hands), Jim met me halfway to say water was flowing like a river in the street in front of our house—and there was absolutely no water on tap inside the house.

Apparently a water main had burst. Jim and I—both of us unshowered—joined the neighbors in the street to hem and haw about the wasted water that could have gone to good use on our drought-stricken trees. Water that would have done a world of good for my paint-and-lubricant-covered hands, too.

As the wait for utility crews to arrive and repair the broken main was long and uneventful, I headed back inside to do what I could to clean my hands and eliminate what I could from my to-do list. Soon Jim followed and we set to work putting up the majority of our Christmas decorations.

Time ticked on and by dinner time, still no water. With no way to make dinner without water, Jim ventured out to pick up Taco Bell. We used wet wipes to wash our hands before touching our tacos, but at least the repair crews had arrived and were hard at work. Even as daylight was gone, they toiled away.

Time continued ticking on...and on...and on.

And the utility crews continued working...and working...and working.

By 9 p.m., the big guns had arrived. Big trucks with big equipment, including big lights. They dug big holes and carried big pipes.

All the while, I sat on my big butt in front of my big window with my big camera in hand, documenting their work late into Saturday night.


Soon after midnight, the clean-up crews were scooping up the last of the dirt. The water was on. Hallelujah!

By 1 a.m. Sunday, everyone was gone.

Until Sunday afternoon, that is, when a few of the neighbors dropped by to check out the street repairs.

I think they were impressed. I know I certainly was. Not only with the repair crew, but even more so with the folks affected by Hurricane Sandy now that I'd had an infinitesimal smidgen of a sampling of what they endured for many, many more hours than I did.

Today's question:

When did you last endure a utility service outage (water, gas, or electric)?