This weekend was brutal. As a last-minute thing, Megan's parents decided to come down, and bring Jim's girlfriend down, and they would redo the spare bathroom, since Jim has the next couple of weeks off, and his vacation plans had fallen through, and they had been meaning to fix it up since we moved in. They came down Friday evening after I had tidied up the house, and we went out to Red Lobster for dinner, since Megan's mom was interested in getting this four course meal deal thing they had going on, which was alright, but since Megan and I were still maybe going to go to Ocean City the next day, we decided not to get the deal, and get smaller meals. Megan got shrimp scampi, and I got fish and chips. Three of the four other people got the meal deal with shrimp and scallop pasta. I was tempted to get shrimp fettucini alfredo, but went for something smaller, anyway. Megan and I managed not to have leftovers, but the other people were quite happy to have some leftovers. Unfortunately, that was apparently not a great idea.
At 9 or so that evening, as we sat around and were contemplating going to bed, the wind picked up, and the lights flickered and went out. We thought it was a brownout... maybe a downed tree limb, but we reported it, anyway... and then went to bed.
As it turned out, the problem was far more extensive than we had thought. Apparently, there was a huge, unexpected storm across several states, and in the area serviced by our electric company, half a million people were without power. We found this out when the power was still out in the morning, and we went out to breakfast and checked on things on our phones. Thus began the weekend-long ordeal of trying to keep from overheating while expecting the power to come back on any minute, as the electric company kept promising.
After breakfast, we came back to check on the dogs and make sure they were okay, and had enough water (oh yeah, Megan's parents brought their dogs... as usual). We sat around and talked for a while... and decided to take the ice cream out of the freezer, since it didn't seem like it was going to last. We figured since we had six people, it would go easily, but two of them didn't eat any, and Megan and I finished it off. After that, we went to Home Depot, since we figured we might as well buy the supplies to have them ready for when we actually get around to doing that project. We walked around getting that stuff, and I felt really dizzy and queasy and awful... Megan said it was from the heat, but I think a lot of it was from having too much sugar. Anyway, after we bought all the stuff, we got it strapped onto the roof of the car (which took a long time), and came home. We unloaded it, and Megan's parents decided it would be better to go home, since it didn't seem like they would be getting the project done this weekend, and their dogs seemed pretty hot. It was probably the right decision. After they left, Jim managed to make some calls and get us an old, small generator we could use to run the fridge. He went to go get it, and Megan asked me to go with him. When we got there, he needed to tune it up, and I helped how I could, mostly by getting him stuff, but he was nice enough to sort of show me how it worked, which was valuable, because it meant I could run it later on.
After that, we decided to go to dinner. I suggested to Megan that we take Jim to the restaurant he really likes as a thanks for getting us the generator, and she agreed. Jim was happy, because he had wanted to go the night before. Megan and I finally got something there that we liked... which pretty much just involved getting steaks, which they apparently do well. After that, we came home, and tried to get ready for bed. We filled up the generator so it would run through the night (or at least until when they said our power would be back on), took ice-cold showers, and went to bed. Around when they said it was supposed to be back on, I woke up. It was still off, but I was too hot to sleep, so I took another cold shower... which shocked me awake, but I was tired enough to fall back asleep after that. We woke up early, because it was too hot to sleep. Megan wasn't in bed when I woke up, because she had moved to try to find a cooler spot. I tiptoed around to find her, and saw her sleeping in the kitchen, so I left her be, and stubbornly tried to sleep more. It didn't really work. When she came back, I got up to go to the bathroom (I had been drinking loads of water whenever possible to stay hydrated). She assumed I was going to get gas when I was really just coming back to bed, but I figured since the generator had stopped, I really ought to go get it. I asked if she wanted me to pick her up anything for breakfast, and she asked me to use these coupons she had for dunkin donuts (the closest one was next to the Bob Evan's we had gone to for breakfast the previous day, and had a huge line coming from it, so I was not looking forward to that). I said I would go, and she said she would come with me. We got gas for the generator, and I filled up Megan's car, as well, since it was there, and then we got breakfast at Dunkin Donuts, and brought some donuts home for Jim and his girlfriend. We ate, and then I refilled the generator (didn't want to eat with hands covered in gasoline).
Eventually, they woke up and had donuts. We talked for a while, and then I helped Megan get her things ready, since she was going to New York for work. She didn't want to leave, but the scorching heat and lack of power helped her not mind quite as much as normal, though I think she felt guilty about leaving me there by myself. After she left, the others got ready to go to DC to visit the zoo, and then went. After they left, I found a towel and some swim trunks, and was thinking of going to the beach, but went to the mall first, thinking to get some lunch, and maybe see a movie, to try to beat the heat. I got to the mall, parked, and went inside, and decided to check out this restaurant I hadn't been to, that Megan wasn't interested in trying. I walked over there, looked at the menu, and decided it was not cool enough at the mall, and I was really frustrated by all the people, so I didn't stay. I also didn't see any good movies, so I just left. I thought about going to the beach, but was pretty hungry, so I just went home, made a sandwich, took a shower, and then decided to read some of my backlog of comics. I worked through about half of them before it started getting dark, and Jim and Heather got home. I put everything away, and considered trying to get some sleep, but then figured I would probably need to get more gas to keep the generator running through the night, so I went out. I parked near the gas station, and called for an update, which said they expected the power to be on in about 45 minutes. Since they had been doing that and pushing it back all weekend, I didn't really believe it, but was hopeful it would work out. I then called Megan to talk before bed (since we didn't have reception in the house), and my mom, since she left me a voicemail asking about whether we had power, and then went to get gas. The first station I went to was out of regular, so that wasn't going to work, and Jim kept calling me, but I couldn't hear him, so I texted him and drove on to the next station. I filled up the portable gas tank and the one in my car, and he had written back that he and his girlfriend were headed to New Jersey to get some AC, and I headed home to an empty house. I got home, put away the gas can, and decided to sit and eat some oreos and milk, and ate maybe two when the power came on, and I shouted with glee.
I was a little unsure about what to do first. I closed a couple of windows so the AC could start running, but eventually decided to shut off the generator first. Then I set about closing all the windows. Some very immobile cats stared at me like I was a madman, since that was the only source of even minimal breeze, but I blissfully kept at it. I then disconnected the generator and dragged it into the garage so it wouldn't be out in the open. I did a bunch of stuff to get the house ready and cooled off, and then decided to eat a real dinner, since I could heat it up. I reheated the leftover pasta, which wasn't very good, but I had three different leftover containers full of it, so I figured I would eat it. I didn't particularly enjoy it, but at least I was full. After that, I took a shower, since I was totally soaked, and it was still rather warm, despite about a half hour of AC. The water was quite warm, though, and I had to dial it back a few times to make it cool enough. I went to bed, then, but it was still rather warm, so I read for a while, until I was sleepy enough, and went to bed.
I was really tired Monday morning, but brewed some coffee, synced my iPod, and headed to work. When I got there, it was rather deserted, and eventually, I found out that they had offered unscheduled leave. I sort of wished I had stayed home, since I was so tired, but decided to stick it out, anyway, since it wasn't very busy, and there was plenty of AC. The afternoon dragged on, since I was sleepy, but it was okay. I came home in the evening, and decided to just have more leftover pasta. I watched an episode of Ancient Aliens while I ate (I'm more than halfway, and it's far less of an imposition to watch these shorter episodes... and I don't lose focus before the end). After that, I ended up playing some Skyrim. I had downloaded this expansion pack for it, that features vampires and werewolves, so I decided to make a new character that would make a cool werewolf, since my other ones would be weird, and set about doing the introductory stuff. I enjoy this new character. It sort of combines the things I liked about my previous characters along with integrating two handed weapons that I'm actually really enjoying so far. It was a lot of fun, in any case, and I really enjoyed blowing off some steam by running around hitting things with a big ass hammer.
I talked to Megan on the phone for a while, and then we went to sleep fairly early, since we both had early mornings, and were pretty sleepy from the weekend. When I went to sleep, though, my mind was racing, so I read a chapter of my novel (I'm almost done), and went to sleep when I was finally sleepy. I was sleepy again this morning, and checked to see if they still had leave available (they did), but ultimately decided to get out of bed and just make up sleep tonight. I was divided, because there was a big project they needed me for this morning. I both didn't want to do it, and felt like I really ought to, so I came in. Work was still rather slow, and that made things go fairly quickly. I went walking today, but didn't push as hard, since it was very hot. It's been nice, but I'm still looking forward to getting some sleep tonight.
We are planning to hang out with my mom and uncle tomorrow. They are in DC for the week, and are coming to see us after touring Congress tomorrow. That should be nice, I guess. At least it's just a little while, rather than an extended visit.
Last night, Matt sent me a Facebook message asking me if I would consider helping move Ryan's stuff back to Maryland from North Dakota. They could use another driver. I wouldn't mind it, but am not sure if they are planning to drive straight through. I'm not good at sleeping while moving. I checked with Megan, and wrote back to Matt with a preliminary "Sure, but..." response. We'll have to see how it turns out. It would be nice to do something nice for them, and spend some time with them, as well.