Wednesday, July 7, 2010

When the Power Goes Out …

Like it did Monday, what will you do?

You work from home. The power dies.

The whole apartment is deathly silent, and the cats look puzzled.

No soft music, no fan or air-conditioning.

Just the steady beep of the UPS (you do have one, don’t you?) and after that, blank screens.

At least you do a proper backup every night , right?

What next?

Here’s what I learned.

1 - Step outside the apartment; if the lobby lights are out, it’s them, not you. Otherwise it might be you and your fuse board. Don’t spend 12 hours waiting for the hydro people to fix things.

2 - I work with paper and pencil; the computer is the last step. It is necessary, but it is not the source of my work. I can keep on working even though I have no computer.

3 - I have a paper diary, and in the back of that diary are phone numbers. Even though my business contact list is out of action, I can catch up on those phone calls to domestic friends; that’s one minor task out of the way.

4 - No I can’t. My phones are mobile phones, apparently dependent on electrical power from the mains. Good thing I’ve got a cell phone. Bad thing it is pay-per-minute-or-part-thereof.

5 - It is late afternoon; the sun streams into the kitchen. A good time to wash dishes.

6 - There are leftovers in the ‘fridge – steamed rice, cold beef, half an onion, red, green and yellow peppers. I can make myself a yummy supper. (Memo to self: Keep a small container of steamed rice or boiled past on hand throughout the summer months)

7 - Since my phones are out, my fried won’t be able to reach me. Phone her using my cell and tell her my landlines are out.

8 - Think now: What’s an ideal office-related job that can best be performed without electrical power. That’s right; re-cable the three power bars that drive UPS, computers, monitors, external backup drives, modems, lights, mug-warmers etc. (I have 12 such devices on this side of the office alone)

9 - Walk through the apartment playing pick-up-and-put-down-somewhere-else. It’s a great excuse to tidy each room. A long-overdue task.

Talk to Me !

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