Power Outages and New (Old) Neighbors

24 09 2008

Despite hearing the non-stop news about the strength and size of hurricane Ike coming into Texas, we were still surprised when on Sunday a week ago it blew into Louisville, KY and knocked out the electricity all across town leaving over 200,000 homes and businesses without power for several days.  Many are still without power.   The effect on us was not too bad.  It reminded us a bit of being back in Indonesia. . .

We had no electricity all day Monday and we spent the afternoon and evening hanging out with our neighbors on the front lawn.  Then our neighbors from upstairs had a great idea to invite everyone up to their apartment, where they had a gas stove, for a big save-the-food-from-the-freezer potluck.  About 20 of us got together and had a great meal and fellowship together.

On Tuesday morning we were gathered again out on the front lawn of our small apartment, when at about 10:00, the electricity came back on.  We all cheered for joy.  We waved excitedly at the LG&E worker driving through the campus.  And then we all said goodbye to one another and turned to go back inside.  Timberley turned to me and said, “I guess this means we go back to how it was before when we never saw our neighbors.”

We thought about it and decided that the freezer potluck was a neat idea.  The following weekend we invited all our neighbors to come for a get-rid-of-the-leftovers potluck.  Everyone brought their leftovers from the week and we had a great time tasting everyone else’s food.

I don’t know if we will be able to continue this new tradition, what with conflicting schedules.  It took a power outage to remind us of a few basic lessons about neighbors, friendship, and Christian fellowship.  The lack of electricity revealed to us our dependence on this one valuable commodity.  And it revealed to us how isolated electricity makes us.  I hope that we do not quickly forget.



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