Thursday, March 16, 2006

coffee unwired

Of course when you work in a basement cubicle and the power goes out, you feel for a flashlight or try to make it out to the hallway that is dimly lit by an emergency light. You get to go home, where, hopefully, you do have power and can make that afternoon cup of coffee.

I am sitting here in my cubicle, formatting the schedule of classes, a tedious task, and thinking it is just about time to head for the Bunn-O-Matic, which makes a tolerable pot of coffee in seconds flat. Before I get up, however, I have to relay my mother's recent plight. She lives in Rochester, a tiny town about 5 miles outside of Springfield, Illinois. As you may have heard, Springfield sustained heavy tornado damage Sunday night. Most of the city—and the surrounding towns—were without power for two days.

So mom thought about driving into Springfield to find a cup of hot coffee, but that didn't seem reasonable. The entire town of Rochester had no power, so a trip to the gas station for a cup was out. Ever resourceful, mom went out and built a fire in the Weber grill. Once she got it going, she put a pot of water on it. Since I heard the story second hand from my brother, I'm not really sure if this method worked. Sounds like a lot of trouble, but when you really need a cup of coffee, especially after two days with no power, you'll try anything.

Personally, I would have braved the streets and driven five miles to the outskirts of Springfield, where Starbucks recently opened a new shop. (I'm sure they would have found a generator, sensing how desperate the whole town was going to be for a good strong cup of joe.!) But a trip into town for one cup of coffee would seem quite wasteful to her, I am sure.

More power to you, Mom!

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