“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts….” —As You Like It, Shakespeare.
If you’re life were a book, what would it be called?
I don’t know what the book about my life would be called, but I think the chapter that described today would be include the words: “pole” “crash” and “power.”
Those who live in north Texas know about the violent thunder and windstorm we had last night. It was my plan to get up at 5 and again work on classes, but when my iPhone went off at 5, I reset it for 6. When it went off at 6, I flicked on the lamp–or tried to–and realized that we didn’t have any power. A few minutes later, our dogs started making noise, so I knew I had to get up and feed them. Fortunately we keep flashlights by our bed for just such an emergency. I flicked mine on and took another one to Shelly, who is spending the week sleeping in another bedroom to keep our three-year-old grandson company.
Somehow I fumbled through feeding our dogs and feeding myself lit only be flashlight. When it started to get light enough to see outside, I saw something that made me say, “Oh wow.” The power pole that stands at the entrance to our driveway was leaning at a 45 degree angle. It was so bad that I wondered if I would be able to get out of our driveway and to work.
I called the power company and got an answering machine. They called me back about 8:30 and within half an hour we had four trucks out to talk about our tilting pole and debate over what to do about it.
I was in class all morning, but when I headed home for lunch, not only was my driveway blocked but the street in front of our house as well. I finally got past and parked in the next-door-neighbors driveway. Finally about noon we got our power back.
Sitting in the dark in my study this morning, I found myself wondering, what if the power didn’t come back on? Our lives are so wrapped up in the assumption that electricity is and always will be available to us, but there are millions of people in the world who live without electricity, without flush toilets and without even sanitary drinking water every day. While they have found a way to survive, just as the billions who have lived on the earth before us, would we? I think our reliance on technology and our fear of losing it is one of the reasons why apocalyptic fiction is on the rise in our country. It is an intriguing question to ask in a society as fragile as our is.
In the meantime, I wonder what the title of the book about my life would be.