When the power goes out …


Like everyone else who lives on the eastside, my power got knocked out as part of the big huge windstorm that hit the pacific northwest (if you haven’t heard about it yet somehow: http://www.cnn.com/2006/WEATHER/12/19/northwest.storm.ap/index.html). Thing is, when the power goes out the problem is not just that your TV won’t work: the roads are jammed because the intersection lights are out (all-way stop), cell phone reception is slim-to-none, and it gets cold really fast.


So imagine my elation when I heard that the Redmond campus had power restored on Saturday, while I was still in the dark at home. I grabbed some food, a gallon of milk, packed up my xbox360 … and went to work! You see, at my building they have  microwaves, kitchens, heat, Internet, and hot showers. I was able to spend the day occupied and entertained (Geometry Wars!).


 Several other people were there with their families because it was a warm place to be. One guy I know is still without power and might not have it until Friday! So he’s packed up his whole family and they’re living at his office for the time being. This is definitely one of the unsung benefits of working at a place like Microsoft.


Comments (1)

  1. Norman Diamond says:

    Um, OK, I think I can match that.

    > Like everyone else who lives on the eastside

    My in-laws live farther east than you do, and we were visiting them at the time.

    > my power got knocked out as part of the big huge windstorm that hit the pacific northwest

    Their power and the rest of their island’s power got knocked out as part of actually a rather small windstorm as these things go.  They’re usually known as typhoons in the western Pacific, but they’re essentially the same as hurricanes.  They’re at the western side of the Pacific Ocean when you look at a globe, but east of you when you look at longitude numbering.  Also they’re north of the equator, so it’s the Pacific northwest.

    > Thing is, when the power goes out the problem is not just that your TV won’t work:

    Right, it’s also that their fans weren’t working and their refrigerator wouldn’t work and our ice cream was melting and I couldn’t do any repair work on relatives’ and neighbours’ computers because their batteries had all worn out years ago.

    > the roads are jammed because the intersection lights are out (all-way stop)

    Oops, oh well, can’t match that.  Roads weren’t jammed because traffic was the same as always, and the nearest intersection light was around 40 km away.

    > cell phone reception is slim-to-none

    Oddly, cell phone reception was still working until cell phone batteries died.

    > and it gets cold really fast

    Actually it got hot really fast.  Cf comment above about fans and refrigerator.

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