So, I was out walking Wednesday, nice warm weather, and I see some BLACK clouds behind me. No rain until a little bit when I got home. I am in the laundry room, sewing and we hear this gigantic crash of thunder, and everything goes black (remember, I am in the laundry room). No power. It amazed me how much I could not do with no power. Dad was trying to leave for work but said he couldn't because he had to deal with it. I told him I would 'deal with it', so I called Idaho Power. I called Hills, their power was out, too. Just us, Hills and Norma (up above). Idaho Power told me there were no power outages reported. Hmmm. They came up, and the Idaho Power experience began. At first they thought it might be a fuse blown on the power line. They thought it was fixed, I came inside, and a minute later heard a huge BOOM, and looked outside and saw black smoke. Not a good sign. Outside I go, following the Idaho Power guy around. Peppering him with questions. He opened up the green box between us and Hills. Lots of cobwebs and icky stuff inside. He said it looked fine. They were thinking maybe it was the transformer. It wasn't. Then, maybe it was the cable buried under the ground. Under our driveway. The cable not in conduit. If it had been, they could just pull out the old cable and fish a new one through, but alas... They were really, really hoping it was not the cable. Idaho, electric code changed in Dec, 1987, requiring all electric cable to be buried in conduit. Our service was installed in June 1987 - No conduit. So they dug up the old cable in a couple of spots and tested it, using very interesting instruments. Both spots on the cable were fried. Sigh... cable couldn't be repaired. They would have to replace all 250 feet of it. Bear in mind since around 9:30 a.m. I have had no power. it is now later afternoon.
I had been calling Dad, giving him updates. These photos are all day three. I should have taken some yesterday, that is when we had vehicles up and down the driveway, in the cul de sac, and behind us. So to finish up day one, they couldn't repair the cable. Need to replace the cable. Have to dig 5 feet under the ground to do that. It is 7 p.m.--still no power. Decide to lay temporary cable above the ground - all the way around the back of the house, to avoid putting it across the driveway - and hook it up to the green box (above) just so the three affected homes can have power until the permanent cable can be replaced IN CONDUIT under the ground. So we had power restored from day 1 evening until day 3 about 9:30 a.m. In the interim, they trenched and bored 250 feet under our front lawn and driveway and Luther's back yard and then down the alley to install conduit and permanent cable.
The above picture is the guys replacing the cable. You might notice that the bush on their right has been hacked up a bit to allow them room to work. Very sad for Dad, especially. It was a really pretty snowball bush. Power is more important to me, at this point.
This is really just a smattering of the vehicles we had in our driveway, etc. There were also many vehicles down at Wilson's driveway too (the one below us). Addendum. Talked to Jan Wilson day one to see if their power was out. She said she was outside when the lightning bolt hit. Said she could taste it in the air. Yikes! Day two they work all day, many, many Idaho Power workers, who were all really nice, boring (the Idaho Power guys were not boring, the machine was boring into the dirt, under the ground:)), digging, working on the Cat, guiding the underground bore, advising, standing, talking. There was even one guy whose job it was ALL day yesterday just to watch the above ground cable so no one got hurt on it. Safety first. Little orange flags were marking the easement, etc.
Here is the Cat working at Luther's. The easement went along his fence. He had big, big mounds of dirt in his back yard. They even had to remove a section of fence. You can't see here, maybe you can enlarged, but there are 8, that's right 8 men working on this trench. The borer could not go the rest of the way because of all the rocks in the ground, even at 5 feet down.
This gives you a little better idea of what went on with the trench in Luther's yard. No back yard playing for Lucas and Patrick today. They finally got the conduit in, cable replaced. Oh, did I mention that the cut my telephone wire as well as McKinlay's the afternoon of day two. We didn't have telephone service last night. They were good enough to replace it, at no cost to me. I think! I can't imagine how much this little adventure cost. All three days we had many workers here, all day long. I should have made them cookies, I should have given them water. What kind of a hostess am I? What kind of a best friend am I. When I got home from the grocery store today, they had all gone.
Until the next adventure, appreciate your electricity. Think about what you would do without it. I hope your days are relatively uneventful. Just wanted you to see what is happening on 20th.