Tuesday, 22 November 2022

"It's Like Christmas Day In The Workhouse."


 It was an horrible wet and very windy night last night in the countryside next to the sea.

The leccy (electricity) went off twice for long periods of time and we couldn't watch the footity ball or use the WiFi.  I thought of my late mother's old saying when something went wrong or rather depressing:  

"It's like Christmas Day in the Workhouse".

Luckily I have pay as you go on my mobile phone so I could look at the Internet and read blogs and follow the football matches.  

I thought about the people long ago.  How did they manage without radio, WiFi or even television 📺?  They probably knitted, played cards, read the Southern Star newspaper for the fiftieth time that week or maybe even talked to one another?

I believe people were much more sociable and neighbours came round for a few bottles and few drams from the bottle what lives on the topshelf in pubs. People talked one to one and not just by WhatsApp and other social media.

Maybe they played cards or even "spin the bottle"? 😀 No wonder people had such big families with no television. I am joking.  "Who's Joe King?"

It will be a long Winter if we get power cuts this Winter.  We might have to talk to each other?  Do you think we are becoming less sociable or is it just living somewhere with no amenities that makes me feel like this and need to write blogs so much?

21 comments:

  1. Worst power outage I experienced was back in TO. An ice storm before Christmas took out the power lines. We were out for five days. Luckily the temperature was below freezing so the majority of the freezer was fine. We emptied it and put the contents outside. Eventually the house got to the same temperature….made for an interesting Christmas.

    Now living in balmy England. A 36 hour power cut last winter was a breeze.

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    1. Hi Traveller. The worst we have experienced here if when we were snowed in 2010 for two weeks. This was a very rare occurrence and is said to only happen every 50 years. We do get power outages when there's been an Atlantic storm. When the electric goes off the pump doesn't work in the well. I remember the power cuts in the seventies, candles and going to school once a week to collect your homework and my mum cooking on
      a brass paraffin stove. It was great just like camping but in your own house.

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    2. The power cuts in the 70s were for a few hours an evening if I remember. Candles, I do remember.

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    3. Yes candles Traveller. God bless the miners . A three day working week. Prog Rock. What more could we want?

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  2. Meant to ask Caravan or Curved Air🤔

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  3. It seems to be wet and windy most nights!
    Back in March 2013 we had an unusually heavy snowstorm which brought down our power lines. We were without power for several days but we managed with candles, torches, the coal fire and a gas hob. This house is all electric so don't know what we would do if it happened again.

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  4. I'm realising that there are lots of other bands beginning with the initials I have used so far. I could easily mention Chicago or Cinderella. I have seen Cinderella. But no it will be an Irish Prog Folk band from Donegal. Thanks!

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  5. I remember the power cuts in the Seventies - and also in Nepal where they were vert regular. We adapted I guess. But now, with no internet - aghh...

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  6. Yes there is a price to pay for living on the coast JayCee. When we installed our 'new' secondhand kitchen recently from the posh house in Cork. We made sure we put a gas hob in so that we can cook or boil water even if we have a power cut. I agree we're all too dependent on electricity. I know someone that's got a solar panel just for the hot water and they don't have to use the Immersion heater. Perhaps we should go off grid? Get P to look at wind turbines.

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  7. Hi Mark. I would be lost without the Tinternet and T'web. I believe it was an Englishman who invented the Internet.

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  8. Power cuts are unlikely whatever the MSM might be saying. I guess they must be saying it if you said so but I wouldn't want to check. I haven't got anyone to talk to so I will be ok and I don't always have the television on. I like the peace of no electricity. Like Mark, I remember the power cuts in the 1970s. We were significantly affected with a milking herd of cows but we got by. I think people talk just as much but just not on the phone, young people seem to prefer texting. You can't judge everything by what people do on smart phones. Life goes on.

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  9. Thanks for that Rachel. I have been looking at adverts and power cuts from the seventies on You Tube. They even turned off street lights and heating in public buildings. Like I said to JayCee we have all become far too dependent on electricity. Did you have Diesel Lister engine for the milking Rachel?

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    1. Yes a Lister stationary engine but before that our milking machine had been run on electricity. It was also a small parlour which in the winter, when we had the cuts, needed to be well lit and was not a main building. We rigged lighting up from lorry batteries and my mother had the same thing in the house. I was actually away living in Newcastle at the time.

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  10. Interesting blogpost Dave. It raises some searching questions about how people live today and how they used to live. One point I would make is that when televisions arrived in British homes in the 1950's, front room seating was rearranged with the focus becoming not the fire or the piano but the television set. I think we have become more insular and less communal. COVID made it even worse and we haven't entirely got back from that.

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  11. Thanks YP. I think there is a lot of dormitory housing especially in the countryside and people only use their houses at night and at the weekend. Growing up in Northwest England property was very affordably priced especially for our parents and I would go out to a pub for the last couple of hours most of the week. Alcohol wasn't expensive like now and you got to meet people and I often found work labouring or gardening. You're right we have become less communal. Especially here in the countryside it's too far and expensive and no public transport to go to town.

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  12. The worst power cut I remember is the 5 days without power that my parents had after the 1986 hurricane that wasn't across southern England. They lost a couple of freezers full of food, and were seriously struggling until power was restored. Fortunately they had non-electric cooking arrangements available (Truburn solid fuel cooker).

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  13. Was that when Sevenoaks became Twooaks Will? I just Googled Truborn solid fuel cookers. We have had acStanley solid fuel range until last year when we converted to a oil Rayburn range. Someone told me that frozen food can still be frozen again if you don't open the lid and expose the food to the air. Perhaps we will go back to hay box and pressure cooking? Thanks.

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  14. This is an interesting discussion. I live off-grid (solar electricity and gas cooking) April-October with no wifi and limited mobile connection. Trust me, it is no hardship to live without internet.

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  15. Thanks for visiting again OVG. I am very interested in how you go about off-grid. I would be lost if I didn't have access to the Internet.

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  16. I think that the thought of living without these things is actually much worse than the actual living without these things. The worst power outage that I can remember was when a tornado went through our town in Michigan. That was only 3 days or so. But it was before the internet, and we had a gas stove. We did not have water, but did not have to go far to get it. It was not freezing cold either, which makes all the difference. The power went off frequently when we lived in the woods. Every time the wind blew, seemed like, but the problem was always sorted out in a couple hours.

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  17. Good point Debby. The THOUGHT Of living without is worse than the actual living without. How did we ever manage without the Internet? It hadn't been invented. I am sure it was the same before radio and television. Perhaps they read and talked to each other more?

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