Luckily for me I wasn't cold. I have storage heaters, which I hate, but at least they had stored their heat during the previous night so despite having no power I wasn't shivering. I was hungry though, and desperate for a coffee. Unable to cook, or even boil a kettle, my options for food were rather limited and typically at the worst possible time I'd run out of bread so couldn't even have a sandwich. A tin of salmon, a bit of cheese and a jar of homemade pickles was pretty much all I could find in my cupboards that didn't need cooking. Meanwhile I had a fully stocked freezer that I couldn't touch and was getting increasingly concerned about the prospect of it all defrosting. I had awful visions of the power being out for days and losing everything. Thankfully that didn't happen.
It's made me realise I need to rethink my 'zombie apocalypse' cupboard and add items that don't need to be cooked. Canned fish, corned beef, crackers, biscuits... that sort of thing. I should probably venture into the loft and dig out my old camping stove too and buy a new gas canister. I really wasn't prepared for a power cut of that length.
I did have lots of candles though. I love my candles, they are something of an addiction, so even after dark I had plenty of light. There's so much we take for granted though isn't there? Light at the flick of a switch, instant heat and cooking facilities - not to mention phone and internet connection - all of which disappear the second the power goes out.
Monday was a slow day, a day without intrusions from the outside world. It was actually quite relaxing in some respects. I spent most of the day reading or sewing, things I didn't need energy for and maybe that set the tone for the week because I've felt a distinct lack of energy ever since. I've struggled to get much done this week and my 'to do' list has got longer instead of shorter. I've been exhausted and listless and really feeling quite down so yesterday I hopped on a bus to the coast. I did it on a whim, and spent money I shouldn't have (bus fare and fish & chips for lunch) but it was just what I needed.
I do things like that very rarely. I'm focused on spending money sensibly so bills and keeping the cupboards reasonably stocked always comes first but sometimes, just sometimes, we have to feed the soul. If I have learnt anything in the last year it is that looking after ourselves is important and that extends beyond getting enough sleep and eating well. I can't do things like take an impromptu trip to the beach every week, or even every month, but every now and again it is good to recharge the batteries. Yesterday I did that by catching a couple of buses to an almost deserted seaside town, indulging in a rare treat of fish and chips, and sitting above the wave and wind lashed beach to eat them. It might not be everyone's idea of a fun day out but it did me the world of good.