Mother Nature went all rock and roll on us yesterday. At about 4:00, she turned off the sun, kicked her wind machine into high gear, and threw sheets of driving rain and hail into the mix. Illuminating her concoction, she split the dark sky with the white hot glow of lightning bolts strobing clear across Rensselaer County. A resounding, thunderous bass shook the foundations of earth, structure and soul.

This morning the sun bathes the earth with little apology, illuminating the moshed and mangled casualties of trees and wires. It’s been 18 hours since we’ve had power. Without power, we have no water. With no water, there is no flushing. Last night’s dinner? Mexican. This, by far, has been our biggest challenge.

At the moment, I’m sitting at Slow Jed’s Mud House. I came here for my morning coffee, the cleanest bathroom within 15 miles, and internet access. I don’t think I fared as well as my husband. He drove 45 minutes to shower at his brother’s before work, but he has internet access with air conditioning. I am still dirty… in public… with wireless down. In fact, access is down at every local coffee shop. I know. I just called.

As much as we are hindered by our reliance on technology at its time of failure, it’s interesting how well we (or should I say “the animals”) adapt. No alarm clock? That’s okay. Kringle, our cat, jumped on the bed at 7:00, meowing his displeasure at the lacking functionality of his auto-feeder. Once we submitted to his breakfast request, the whole of the animal kingdom took advantage of our powerlessness. Kringle was decadently served by hand as Bill hovered to clean out every last kibble that Kringle left behind.

I suppose the musings of a takeover began last night. For us humans, using a lighter to ignite the electronic-start gas stove was brilliant. Making Mexican?without being able to wash the dishes? This was good only for the mouse who has a thing for cheese and sour cream… and for the cat who likes mice. For us, eating the Ben and Jerry’s before it melted was a good thing. Being unable to rinse the residue of dairy from the container? Not so good… unless you’re Bill the Dog. This morning he stole the empty pint to shred and savor in the yard. Fortunately, I was able to block that maneuver just as Bill reached the dog door, and this was accomplished without the aid of morning coffee.

Joy! Internet access has just been restored to Jed’s!

Does this offer hope for home? I just called the answering machine… which still won’t pick up. It’s not looking good. If power isn’t restored?by tomorrow, we’ll have to rush in a Port-A-Potty for the 29 people coming to our house party.

Wish us all luck.

For now, I’m about to be served a grilled veggie panini and the live music is starting. This is not a bad way to spend the afternoon.

PS: After filling the freezer and fridge for tomorrow’s party, we noticed that the things we bought were melting. Calling in a repair man yesterday morning, he saved both the day and the food by replacing a failing defroster unit. We thought we were in the clear until lightening struck far more than twice. With a projected time of 3:30 for our power restoration, a full 24 hours from when it went out, I think we lost all our food anyway.