Sunday, August 24, 2008

Just a normal Sunday...

Let me tell you about our "normal" Sunday...
It began last night (Saturday night), really.  Many things in our home run on propane gas.  We buy/refill tanks just like we had in the States for the gas grill.  Mainly, our oven and our hot water heater are the big things.  So while Billy was in the States, one of our tanks ran out and Liz and I changed it.  Now, normal people would go fill that tank so it wouldn't be empty - but NO, the gas company will only pick up and refill two tanks at a time (not single tanks).  So yesterday, Billy was cooking dinner and the oven tank ran out, so he took it off and hooked up the reserve tank (we have 4 tanks in total).  Keep track here... we now have two empty tanks, a working tank on the stove, and a working tank on the hot water heater.  But, you guessed it, the hot water heater gas tank went out just as I got in to take a bath.  No hot water until the gas man can come and exchange the tanks (he rides a bike with propane tanks strapped to the back).  The one saving grace was that we have a second hot water heater that only serves the office bathroom and it is electric... so I think to myself, "Self, don't fret.  You can take a shower tomorrow in the office."

So, tomorrow comes - Sunday.  We woke up to no electricity.  Great.  No hot water in the shower.  Okay.  I'll just take a bucket bath to get ready for church.  By the way... Liz's house didn't have electricity for two days this week and they lost all of their food in their fridge, etc, so I'm having a mild anxiety attack thinking about the possibility of no electricity for days.  So - back to the story... when the electricity is out, the pump doesn't work, so the only water we get is a trickle that is working off of gravity flow from the roof - Joy!  Eventually, we all get "clean" and we manage to eat breakfast and get ready for church.  Side note... you should NOT wash your hair in a bucket and expect to have it dry correctly and look presentable for church when your hairdryer is ELECTRIC!  Duh!

Okay - the family is good to go, we all have our Bibles, and we are out the door.  That's when Billy says, "I just shut the door and I don't have my keys."  Are you kidding me!!!???  You see, doors in latin america don't have doorknobs.  You literally open the door with your key - you insert the key in the lock and turn it and the door opens, no handle involved.  The downside of this is that every time the door closes, it is locked and you need your key.  Just last week, Sarah and I were out in the backyard and the wind slammed the kitchen door closed and we were locked out of the house in our own backyard!  Thankfully, a window wasn't shut well and I was able to pull the bars apart just enough to squeeze Sarah through.  But THIS TIME - no such luck.  We were in the front yard and the house was locked up tighter than Fort Knox.  Oh, did I mention that there is a separate lock on the front gate and the key is ALSO in the house?  Yeah, so we are locked in our own front yard.  We did manage to get out of the front yard and go to church, leaving the locked house behind until we returned.

When we came home, Billy did his very best Spiderman imitation and climbed up on the front fence, jumped over to the brick sidewall, climbed/swung over to the balcony, and managed to get to the balcony door without breaking any limbs... you know, at our age, breaking a hip could be a bad plan! :)  He then broke a window (we'll have to have that replaced tomorrow) and managed to get his hands on another key and open the balcony door.  Our hero!

Tonight, we have cardboard on our window, the electricity came back on, the gas man came and replaced all of the tanks, I have had a nice shower, and my hair is dry.  All in a day's work...
I think tomorrow we'll get another key or two and strategically place them - what do you think?  I wonder if I can find a battery-powered hairdryer...