Friday Flotsam: Flickering

The lightning storm rolls in fast, changing a beautiful Spring day – the first we’ve seen – from bright to dark in very little time.

Out the plate-glass window, the sky lights up, and then the thunder rolls on and on. It would be good to head on home before it gets worse.

The rain starts to pour down and two blocks from home there’s pea-sized hail in the mix. But a lull gives me a chance to get up the stairs and in the door before it picks up again.

It isn’t supposed to rain for long anyway. It’s supposed to dissipate quickly and give way to wind.

Sure enough, the wind blows the rain away, but as the day fades, it’s still quite fierce outside. m

Most of the power lines here are underground but somewhere, some must be above, because the lights go out briefly. The carbon monoxide alarms beep to warn me they’ve switched to battery power and then the hum of the house quiets. No fridge, no blower on the furnace, the high pitched electronic hum of #ModernLife stops. The clock ticks – I changed the battery recently. Otherwise it’s very still…

And then, with another chirp, everything comes back on. But it flickers. Not stable.

Off-on again, it’s less than a minute of darkness.

Then everything stays on for a while. For a while. Long enough that I reset the manual clocks to the right time.

Flicker flicker off. On.

On. Off. On.

Three more times it goes like this, Of the three, the last time it’s off for three minutes. That is not long. But it is long enough to wonder if it will be longer.

A potted plant outside is knocked over, and the power flickers one last time overnight. Once again, that is brief, but enough to chirp off alarms and make me have to reset all my clocks again.

But of course that will wait for the morning, because until it’s over, it’s unclear if it will be an outage – or just a flickering.

Sunshine in the morning!

And all these flashing clocks.