Lights and Water

12 06 2007

Yesterday we had one of our longest power breaks ever; 16 hours. Most of the northern area of town was out and a visit to the bank to draw cash was er, illuminating.
– Are you online?
– No. We have no power.
(Like I had not noticed)
– So what has happened to your backup?
– The generator has no fuel.
(I bank with these people?)
– So may I draw some cash.
– Oh yes.
So I go up to the teller and give her the cheque. She gathers a few more cheques from customers in the queue and disappears.
– Where has that teller gone?
– To check on the accounts.
The teller comes back without the cheques.
– What is happening now?
– Oh, someone is phoning through to another branch to check if those accounts have enough money.
– Why don’t you use a laptop and inverter for these emergencies? (Or just ensure that someone remembers to buy diesel).
Mumbles.
– I see. (I don’t  see of  course but  I do see that this  conversation  is  going  nowhere).
I eventually get my cash.

Oh, but when the power comes back we are so  GRATEFUL! I was so happy last night when I could actually see to do something. Daft, we should be furious at the incompetence and greed that has caused the whole damn mess.

On Friday night I went to a party at the local gym. They happen a couple of times a year in an attempt to keep stiff upper lips, foster good morale etc. I am not a great party goer being short on social skills but this one was OK. In an attempt to generate a bit of humour one was supposed to bring along a piece of paper and write on it why it was still a good idea to be  in Zimbabwe. These were then read out aloud by Debbi, my cousin-by-marriage and a mindless optimist.  One of the more memorable ones was: “Having lights and water is better than having an orgasm”. I did ask who’d written that as I was prepared to trade lights and water (and no male would make a statement like that) which I have (had) in plenty, but no-one owned up.

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One response

14 06 2007
Gillian

Its taken you guys 30 years to reach this stage – for us (SA) its only taken about half that time. Yesterday our truck couldn’t be offloaded at the Spar depot in Jhb becaue they had no electricity and hadn’t thought to organise a backup system. the driver was there at 4am to offload and was finally offloaded (by borrowed generator power) at 10.30 last night. Apparently a major sub station or something had blown, affecting lage chunks of the East Rand. Power should be restored to some places today, others will have to wait a week.
Power prices go up, the fat cats line their pockets and nothing is spent on maintenance.

I suggest giving your cousin-by-marriage a large candle – that way she can have lights and an orgasm!

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