Monday, December 04, 2006

The Good News Is....................

.................... Eventually everything turned out okay and I got big coil of copper wire from an electric company repairman. The bad news is I had to sit in fear for 24-hours waiting to see if my house was going to burn down to get it.

Friday we finally got hit with the big storm the rest of the country was bearing the brunt of last week. We didn't get the ice and snow many places got, but we did get rain, but worst, the big winds. The wind gusts here were over 60 miles per hour. All day the wind kept getting worse and by evening, it was blowing pretty badly. I was thinking that the worst that would happen was we would loose power, but I never expected anything else.

About 9:00 pm, Lori and I were in our bathrobes, cuddled up on the couch watching a movie when we heard a very loud popping sound outside the dining room widow. We both jumped.


I jumped up off the couch, turned and looked out the window toward the direction of the popping noise. It happened again and we saw sparks shoot past the window. I ran over to the window and looked up in the direction the sparks came from. It happened again and this time I saw a large flash near somewhere up on toward the side of my house.

I turned to Lori and said something like, "HOLY SHIT! I THINK THE ELECTRIC SERVICE TO THE HOUSE IS BURNING UP!"

I ran into the bedroom and threw on my pants. I told Lori she better get dress in case we had to get out of the house quickly. Then I ran back out into the living room, got a jacket out of the closet and ran out into the front yard to get a better look at what was going on. I didn't have to wait long before I saw another flash and heard the popping noise. I ran over to my neighbors yard to get a better look to see exactly where the arcing was coming from.

A moment later it happened again and now I could see what was happening. Yes, the electrical service was shorting out. It was shorting about two feet from the house. My electricity hadn't gone out yet, so I knew it hadn't shorted completely YET, but I was sure it would at any moment.

I figured if that happened, the service would more than likely burn completely through dropping the live wire onto the roof of my car and at a minimum, burning the paint off the car wear ever it sparked. Then the wire would drop to the ground arcing until either the circuit breaker on the pole transformer tripped off, or the transformer exploded sending hot oil all over everything near by. None of these options was something I was looking forward to.

The arcing was less frequent now, so I jumped quickly into my car and backed it out of the driveway as fast as I could. I parked it in front of my house, but far away from the driveway and the pole the service came from.

I ran back into the house and told Lori to start shutting things off. I called the Power Company and got the typical recording. "We are having wide spread power outages across the Island. Press one for, blah, blah, blah, or two for emergencies for things like downed lines and dangerous situations."

I figured this qualified as and emergency, so I pressed two.

A real live person got on the phone and asked me what the emergency was. I babbled something like, My house service exploding, not wanting my house to burn down, a live wire could drop to the ground, etc, etc, etc".

Now WTF that has to do with anything was beyond me, but I asked her to get someone over here right away because I didn't want my house to burn down. She assured me they would get someone over here ASAP. I got off the phone and told Lori what the lady at LIPA told me.

One of us mentioned that the arcing seemed to have stopped. Then Lori said that it sounded like the wind had stopped. I looked outside and sure enough, it had practically died down to nothing. I guess since the wind stopped, the wire stopped moving around and so it stopped shorting out. I had no idea why it stopped nor why we still had electricity, but was grateful that was what happened.

Now the wait began for the LIPA Calvary to arrive and fix my electrical service.

About an hour goes by and nobody shows up, so i call back LIPA. I speak to another lady and ask her to check and make sure I am on the list for potential catastrophes. She assures me that I am, but that it will be awhile before they could get to me. They have to all the outages repaired before they get to me. I give her a lot of "what ifs". You know like if the live power line drops to the ground or my house catches fire. She tells me, "If there anything changes call back. If you see flames, call your fire department."

That was so ludicrous that I had to laugh. But WTF was I going to do? Yelling at her wasn't going to do any good, so I just went back to waiting. And wait we did. We waited until about 8:30 the next night, about 24 hours, before someone came.

I had just finished making dinner and Lori and I were sitting down to eat when I heard a knock on the front door. I answered the door and it was a LIPA repairman. I went outside and explained what had happened.

He got a ladder of the truck, put it next to the house and climbed up to check the electrical service. At first he couldn't see what happened, but said that the insulation was old and brittle and had come off the wire in numerous places. He then saw where the service shorted and said he was going to change it and that we would be without power for about an hour.

I went back inside to eat dinner while we waited for him to do the repair. It would have been romantic eating by the light of my oil lamp, but tension I had been feeling for the last 24 hours made it difficult to think about romance right then.

Ten minutes later the lights went out and about ten minutes after that we finished eating. We waited to clean up and when right outside to watch the repairman finish up. When the lights came back on, Lori went back in the house while I waited for him to finish.

The repairman finished up pretty quickly. The power was only out for about 1/2 hour total. When he came down off the ladder, he showed me the service wire. It was just like he said it was, old and brittle and the insulation had come off in numerous places. Then he showed me where it had arced. All the strands one one leg had burned through except for one.

Here's my brand new electrical service.

Other than that, let's see..................

Today is Lori and my 9-Month Anniversary. Happy Anniversary baby! Lori stalked me from when she first saw my cute smiling face on my MySpace web page in November, until I asked her out and took her to the movies for out first date on March 4, 2006.

This weekend Lori and I had a great time together. Well, except for the electrical malfunction We went shopping, bought some stuff, I cooked, she cleaned up and we snuggled a lot. Saturday night we even tied our record for number of times snuggling. We were as naughty as always, maybe even more. I woke her up a little before 6:00 this morning for a quick snuggle before she had to get up at 7:30 for work. I hope she's not too tired today.


Anonymous said...

yikes, those are NOT the sorts of sparks I want to hear about with you and lori! much better the biological variety! glad it all worked out in the end and no houses were burned down.

gab said...

Glad it worked out and you didnt have a fire. That stuff scares the hell outta me every time it happens I could tell you about a time but heck it would take to long. Is there something in the air today? Hubby woke me up long before I was ready to get up for some snuggling!!!!! Good greif you men. lol but we ladies love it. Happy 9 months Anniversary you two now go snuggle some more!!!

Tommy said...

Damn ... glad it all worked out this time. I had a tree rat fall onto some lines coming out of a transformer one time. Talk about the fourth of July in November! Woo hoo! Congrats on the 9 months. Snuggling is good. mmmmmmmm.

barman said...

Going for the snuggle record. Good for you. I was working in the garage this morning. I think you got the better end of the deal.

See you gues are so hot you just were buring up the lines. I hope they put in heavy duty stuff so it can take all that snuggling. :) Glad you did not have anything worse happen from the electric problems.

jillie said...

Like two're snug as a bug in a rug...LOL!!!!! two rock!!!

Libby said...

i just LOVE stories with happy endings!!

SignGurl said...

Sometimes sparks suck! Glad it all worked out with major snuggle time included.

patti_cake said...

Happy Anniversary Tony & Lori!
Go ahead and keep breaking those snuggling records ;)

Glad everything turned out okay. It could have been very very bad.