Ms. Sandy was a total bitch whom I underestimated. I lived in what I can only describe as "pitch darkness" for what felt like a month. After all this time of not being able to turn on a light switch to see where my cat had puked, I finally got my power back and became the happiest girl in the whole world. Am I being a drama queen or what? And I'm not talking about the inner power to change the world yada-yada-yada, but the electric power that Mr. Thomas Alva Edison invented so conveniently back in the 1800's. The first night with no electricity felt like camping in the woods- very adventurous and romantic, but a little uncomfortable. The following days were neither adventurous, nor romantic. They were just plain depressing. I felt most of the symptoms of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), which according to Wikipedia are:
1. Hopelessness: Especially every morning when taking a shower with freezing cold water. Let's not forget that due to my curly and unruly hair I have washed it with shampoo and conditioner every day of my life (at least every day I take a shower, which doesn't necessarily mean every day of my life).
2. Increased appetite: My body went to hibernation mode.
3. Increased sleep: See point #2.
4. Less energy and ability to concentrate: Concentrate doing what exactly? There's nothing to do when half your city is in hibernation mode (I should add "crankiness" to the list).
5. Loss of interest in work or other activities: I'm going to have to disagree with this one. I never felt so happy that my office is located in the wonderful neighborhood of NoPo (North of Power). In the darkest days, I couldn't wait to go to work to charge my cell phone, check on my virtual social life, and to see a lit light bulb face to face.
6. Sluggish movements: Are we talking about peristaltic movements? I disagree again. For a reason I cannot explain, my horrible digestive system worked beautifully (i.e. no signs of chronic constipation!) when the lights were off. I think I've reached the point where professional help is needed.
7. Social withdrawal: I felt so cranky I didn't want to socialize with anyone anyway. I could hardly stand myself.
8. Unhappiness and irritability: Yes and yes. And this is the scariest part. How can our happiness depend on external factors like electricity? The events of the past days have been a nuisance for some (like me), but deadly and devastating for many. We live in a world where one and a half billion people - more than one out of five - are forced to live with no electricity. And yet we (the lucky bastards) get depressed after five days without a working refrigerator, electric lighting whenever we want it, and warm water (some people dream of having access to clean water regardless of the temperature).
Real Nice Thing in Life #15: To get wake-up-calls from Mother Nature to stop being so spoiled. Today is a new day for me. I will be more grateful for what God (i.e. good-energy old man with white beard and beer belly living above the clouds and keeping an eye on us) has given me. To realize that taking a shower with cold water is not the bad beginning of a new day but rather a great way to energize your skin and battle that other horrendous bitch called Ms. Cellulite.