On Eskom

Anybody who resides anywhere near the mother city, will know about the horrific load shedding we are suffering at the moment. (Actually, I think the whole country may be affected, but I haven’t read any local news recently).

This means:

  • Massive traffic jams: All traffic lights turn into 4-way stops, and if that wasn’t slow enough, people crash into each other out of anger.
  • At least 2-hours every day of sitting and twiddling your thumbs, while listening to the screech of unhappy UPSs. (Occasionally this overlaps with lunch time)
  • Having to shout over the roar (and cough through through the stench) of generators when you go out to visit any such-equipped businesses.
  • Peaceful, inky-black skys, and no noise of neighbour’s TV sets at night (if you are lucky enough to be load-shed at night).
  • Cold supper.
  • A flat laptop, unless you make sure to keep it fully charged against such emergencies.
  • Breakage in various systems, when UPSs don’t transfer cleanly, and routers / switches decide to disagree.
  • Various networks (like UCT) become unreachable, because while they have gensets and UPSs, the telkom equipment connecting to the outside world don’t.
  • And, generally, a very grumpy tumbleweed.

I’ve been frequenting computer suppliers in the last week, and seen an insane amount of UPSs first piled up at the dispatch desks, and then vanish. Now is the time to be in the UPS and genset -selling business.

To make things worse, this morning, I decided that I’d have to dismantle my gate-motor, to get out of the driveway. (Because nobody knows where the key for the manual-override lever is. After getting half-way, I worked out that it had a backup battery. Duh!

Gate: 1, Eskom: 1, Geek: 0.

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