Incessant

It’s Sunday night. By tomorrow afternoon we’ll hit a week since the storm hit. No power yet. The power crew was relaxing a pole on a main line two blocks down this afternoon, so I’m hopeful maybe they’ll work their way down my street tomorrow. 

Of course it’s also possible that they work the other direction, or work north before east, or any other number of things. I want to be unselfish and see my neighbors get power back and at the same point I’m so ready to get it back myself. 

The noise of the generator is incessant. It’s a big one — 8000 watts — and it runs from when I start it in the morning at 7:30 until I turn it off around 10 in the evening. I’ve been thinking of it in some ways like a farmer’s work horse. Put it in the garage for the night, hope it rests well and feels good again tomorrow because I’m relying on it. So far so good.

Its noise is reminding me of running the Shop-Vacs in the basement during the flood of 2008. For one brutal night we had three vacs going to keep the water at bay. They had to be emptied every 30 minutes or so through the night. I sat upstairs with earphones on watching videos to try to stay awake, but I couldn’t get away from that wall of noise. The generator feels that way, too. Even inside the house with the windows shut, it’s there. Finally at night we shut it down and the quiet is so nice… but then of course there are no fans to cool us while we sleep. 

We walked the neighborhood tonight and it looks like a war zone. Every house has trees down. Almost every house has either missing siding or a tarp on the roof or a fence down (or all three). Normalcy is years away, not months. 

Tonight I’m sitting in a lawn chair out front of the house drinking a beer and watching the sun go down. It’s a little bit of partial peace at the end of a long week, disturbed only by that incessant noise of the generator. 

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