Tag Archives: electricity

The Dark Ages

Angel Chimes

We have load shedding again! It has been Stage 4 for several days, meaning scheduled power cuts of up to 2 1/2 hours, 3 times in 24 hours.

Last night they announced it was going to Stage 6. There are jokes about this online: namely that at Stage 6 a man from Eskom comes round to your house and blows out your candles!

Mostly people work round the power cuts. Knowing the times beforehand means you can plan to some extent. It is still extremely annoying though. The other night our power went out at midnight and came back on at 2.20 am. The neighbour’s alarm went off both times, waking everyone up!

Your day becomes divided into 2 hour allotments. Either you have power, and watch the clock counting down with anxiety and dread, till it is switched off; which can be anything from on the dot, (mean!) to 13 minutes past the hour, as today, giving you the momentary false hope that maybe they’re not cutting your power!

Or you are sitting in silence and perhaps darkness, anxiously waiting with anticipation for the power to be returned. This can be from 10 past the hour to half past the hour, by which time you are beginning to wonder if they have forgotten about you!

It is not too bad here in Cape Town, as daylight in summer is from 5.30 am to 8 pm. Johannesburg, 1400 km farther north, only has daylight from 5 am to 7 pm. Believe me, they will notice that extra hour of darkness at night!

Also, I feel sorry for those who work online. Even if you do have power, the internet is slow because other places are down. Service providers try to re-route your connection, but there is still a bottleneck.

I even feel sorry for businesses. This time of year they make enough money to see them through the following year. In an already struggling economy, many businesses will fold next year.

Why is the power supply still so bad in South Africa?

Ageing power plants and equipment; poor maintenance and repair;  mis-management; lack of planning.

Well, the purpose of this post (OK I had a good moan!) was just to let my Readers know that I am struggling to keep up with my Blog, especially commenting on yours. So if you don’t hear from me as much as usual, at least now you know why.

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“In vain have I struggled. It will not do.”*

*Can you guess who said this and which book it is from?

Sunbeams will be sent to those with the correct answer, which I’ll put in my next post.