• Annmarie Throckmorton, M.A.

Internal Combustion Into Fearful Emotions

Several times a year, especially during the winter, the electrical power goes out in my neighborhood, affecting 6,000 residences out of the twin cities of Bloomington/Normal, Illinois' population of 169,572. It seems that you can count on the electricity to go out when it is coldest. The most recent winter electrical failure lasted about twelve hours which was more than long enough for my house to get very cold. I turned on running water in the taps to prevent the pipes from freezing. I plugged my tablet into its ten-hour backup power supply. I am pre-prepared with four wool winter blankets and four velour plush summer blankets, all in pretty shades of water blue, so I piled on all eight blankets and burrowed under with my cat, wishing that she was a large warm dog, or better yet that I had a hefty lover back to provide warmth and comfort. As I age deeper into old I find it harder to manage my fears, and this long electrical outage frightened me. I worried for twelve long hours, was this be just another of their incompetent electrical failures, or was this the beginning of something else, surprising and horrible?


After each electrical outage I get an email survey from my electrical provider, Ameren Illinois, wanting to know how I liked their electrical service during the outage. Hunkered down in my cold and dark house, not knowing what was happening, how do they think I liked it? I never respond to their surveys as I am sure they will not comply with my request that Ameren Illinois give me monetary compensation for the anxiety and discomfort they caused me with those twelve lost hours of electrical service. In actuality Ameren increased my bill this month, telling me that my usage and their rates went up.

Twelve Hour Winter Power Outage Causes Internal Combustion Into Fearful Emotions

by Annmarie Throckmorton 01-03-21


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