Today we awoke a little late because the alarm clock did not go off. Looking out the window, we saw that it had snowed overnight – just a thin covering but enough to cause a few problems. We and lots of other households in our area are without power, and it will take them a few hours to fix it. From experience, we know that when the authorities say the power will be on by noon it will probably be a bit longer.
We are used to getting the odd power cut over the winter months. I am set up with my laptop, which should have a few hours of power left in it, and fortunately can work online for a while using a hotspot from my husband’s phone. Of course, power is off to our fridge and freezer, but things should last over this short power cut period.
We have candles and matches, camp stoves to boil water… we’re fine. But the work we are doing here is designed to help us manage better when power cuts and other such issues arise. We are trying to build resilience into our systems.
There are a couple of wood burning stoves in the house we’re in at the moment. But the Rayburns that have been delivered (which will run heating in here and in the barn) are yet to be plumbed in and flued. In the short term, we have been running a couple of electric radiators when it gets very cold (our electricity is 100% renewable).
Ultimately, of course, we plan to have our own solar panels, so we are not as reliant on the grid. But we are not at that stage with our barn conversion quite yet. This is a reminder to us that we have to make sure that we build resilience into all systems, so we can cope with increasingly frequent extreme weather events in the coming years.