Wednesday was a pretty normal day, particularly after a few weeks of travel and other off-the-beaten-path kind of stuff. Erin and I were both pretty busy all day and the kids generally did a good job keeping themselves entertained.

We’ve been trying to limit the TV with them, and had done so successfully all afternoon. So it is with no small amount of unfortunate coincidence that, when we finally opened the gates and said, “Sure, you can watch some TV,” the power randomly went out.

It took a few minutes of being on hold before I found out it was a area outage. While a bummer, that was at least a relief. Last summer we had a fun few days when our electrical box basically blew up and we had to drop a bunch of dough-rei-mi to get a new one. Home improvements are cool when you can say, “Hey, check out this new light fixture!” or whatever it might be to your friends. It’s harder to say, “Hey, don’t you love our new electrical box!? It has wires and lets us turn the toaster on!”

Anyway, I was relieved that the problem wasn’t in our responsibility zone, but that was poor comfort to the kids, who only knew they couldn’t watch DuckTales. 

We’ve gone through a lot as a family in the past few months. Quarantine, isolation and fear. But no electricity for a couple hours? That was a bridge too far.

Making matters worse was that even my attempts to placate Henry with his tablet failed because, of course, the battery was dead. I spent probably close to five minutes with it plugged in, fiddling with the cord, cursing that it wouldn’t charge before remembering there was no electricity and I might as well have plugged it into a log.

The power was out for maybe 90 minutes, but that is of course an eternity to two little kids. We muddled through, but not for lack of screams and drama. 

So while there might be many pandemic similarities between the current COVID crisis and the 1918 flu, one big difference is that at least today we have Disney+.