Family & Kids, Home, Life

Surviving Off The Grid – The Essentials

So we have no electricity and its getting dark and the kids are all over me, outraged!

Dad! There’s no electricity!

Yes, I say, I can see that.

Why!? they ask.

Uh, mumble mumble, payment mumble, I mumble.

Soon I have to confess: I paid late and we got cut off. Now there’s a re-connection fee I have to pay and a delay. I’m thinking fridge, freezer, supper tonight but they have far more urgent and greater disasters and catastrophes in mind:

“THERE’S NO WIFI!!” they scream in unison.

Now they’re ganging up on me. “In unison” and “Jess & Tom” are not usually linked phrases.

Well, I’m walking to the shops, I say, thinking charcoal, firelighter, matches, candles. Do you need anything? Their voices go up two octaves as they shout as one:

“AIRTIME!!”

=======ooo000ooo=======

Lasted four days. It was cool. Very instructive. Gas cooker and candles. Cleared out the fridge and deep freeze. AND – they survived!

(I had paid on the due date but had ignored this little instruction “Rx is due immediately, the rest can be paid on the due date”).

 

Family & Kids

On the Grid – and YAY!!

It’s 2017 and Tobias Gumede has electricity in his home at last! This Friday he switched on the fridge he bought many years ago – and it worked!

He’s here:

Jozini Map

Here’s a pic of his home the last time I saw it:

TobiasuMuzi

and a close-up of his environment:Tobias Homestead map

A pre-paid meter has been installed and his wife Thulisiwe will top up her electricity card at the store a few km away, or on her trips to Jozini village.

Hats off to Thulisiwe! Imagine raising seven kids over twenty years before getting running water a few years ago – and now electricity! Here she is with Tobias and five of the kids. In the background as always:

DSCN8130

And now they have ugesi, isiZulu for electricity.

Celebration called for!

Life

A horse of a different kettle of fish

We got a new kettle. The fancy black round Russell & Hobbs started leaking and that irritated me as it was only a year (or three? four?) old and I thought stuffit, so I dug the camping kettle out of the ammo box in the garage and we became Team Liquigas.

So I got to know the smell of red hot aluminium and that wasn’t good, so I used a pot and got to know the smell of really hot plastic handles and sometimes we’d only get tea after two boiling-dry’s and by the third boiling the kitchen smelt funny. And sometimes we rescued it but there was only enough water for half a cup, not three cups.

So I caved in within two months and bought another kettle that uses Eishkom electricity and switches off automatically because we are MAA in our house – Multiple Attraction Abundant – or VWE – Various Wonders Enriched.

We are NOT Attention Deficit.