Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The Strangest Electricity Cut


Wednesday 19th December 2012
A foggy start to the day
We've travelled to quite a few countries in our time and some of the poorer ones experience regular power cuts. But in this country they are an infrequent event. In London we expected the occasional power cut, maybe once every couple of years. If it was a really bad one it might last a couple of hours.
But since we've moved up to rural South Holland we have had numerous cuts to the supply. Every now and then the lights flick off, the cooker clock resets itself, the phone beeps. Often as not this lasts just a couple of seconds, but just occasionally it goes on longer. We put it down to living rural, though I can't really see why that should make our electricity supply less reliable.

However today we experienced something altogether more odd.

I went up into the loft to inspect the electician's work and was surprised by the dullness of the light up there. Perhaps he only had a 10W bulb to hand.
Back downstairs to find Sue complaining that we had a power cut and that only some things were working. I tried to explain that this was not possible and began worrying that the electician had done something terrible to our supply. It was as if the whole house was operating on about a tenth of the normal wattage. The lights came on...just. The phone was on, but not enough to be able to answer. The TV lights were on, but there was no signal.

This was very puzzling indeed.

Eventually I worked out what was happening. Yes, we had a power cut for an hour or so, as did the neighbours. The flicker of electricity that we did have was what was being produced by the panels on the roof. This is the amount of electricity which trickles into our supply every hour the sun is up. Of late I've spent more time than usual up in the loft and on a bright day there is a buzz up there, quite literally, the buzz of electricity being generated. Just another piece of the jigsaw.

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