Coping with the energy crisis

Since this is my third post in a row dealing with this subject, you can probably imagine by now that it is a BIG issue in my corner of the world. It looks like energy rationing is going to take place for more than just a few days… we’re talking about weeks.

A lot of people are upset and blame the current government about the situation. Of course, this has been a recurrent problem over the last thirty years – that was when the largest power plant in the country was built, and no other government has done anything else since then. I figure that at least this government has started to invest, but power plants are not built overnight. Additionally, it seems we still do not understand the effects of our irresponsible use of the planet, and that many of these situations are related to the irregular weather patterns brought on by global warming. Whereas Central America has been badly hit by hurricanes, here in the Andean region we are experiencing the worst drought in over 40 years. Not just Ecuador, but Peru, Colombia, and Bolivia are facing similar situations. In fact, one of the additional reasons for our energy shortage is that the energy we buy from Colombia has been cut because they are also facing shortages.

Anyway… in times such as these I find it is important to restructure one’s life to deal with the situation as graciously as possible. This means adjusting to the rationing schedule.

Today the electricity in our part of town was cut from mid-morning to mid-afternoon. So my mom and I decided this was the perfect time to do our grocery shopping and a couple of other errands (malls and supermarkets have their own generators).

The first item on the list was to find some oil for our “antique” oil lamps (and stock up on candles). It’s been a while since we’ve had to use them, so finding the oil for them proved an impossible task. The closest we came to it was  citronella oil, which is not recommended for indoor use. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a good shot of the label, but one of the warnings stated it needs to be used with caution, as it has been proved to “cause cancer in the State of California.” We figured there was some error in translation (so many products come from Asian countries), but the label indicated it was “made in the U.S.A!” It doesn’t serve our purposes, but we got a good laugh out of it.

My mother also decided she needed what she calls a new “stomper.” I thought it was some tool to be used in the garden, so she had to correct me indicating it’s “that thing you use to stomp the toilets.” She claims that is what her mother called it and that it makes perfect sense. Yet I had never heard it called anything but a PLUNGER!

A little stunned by the variety of plungers and the difference in cost, we decided the best way to decide which to buy was to put it to the test… on the tile floor! For a minute there we weren’t sure we would get them off! We bought the one that stuck the best.

Anything to laugh a little and make the best of a not-so-fun situation….

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