Saturday, July 30, 2011

Becoming accustomed to Cyprus power cuts...

It's made a big difference knowing in advance when to expect power cuts, since the provisional schedule was published on Tuesday.

Even better was being able to sign up for mobile phone alerts. I appreciated the commenter who let me know how to do this, and signed up immediately. It wasn't all that helpful on Wednesday... the schedule had already informed me that our region's power cut would begin some time between 4.30 and 5.00. At 4.00pm a text message arrived, in Greek. I typed it quickly into Google Translate.. and it told me that disruption to our region would start some time between 4.30 and 5.00pm, and would last up to two and a half hours. Which is what I knew already. Still, it reminded me to turn the computer off around 4.25. I wasn't worried about the cut on Wednesday as we had been invited to the home of some friends.

On Thursday, however, I was very thankful for the phone alert. Assuming that between 4.30 and 5.00 was our regular scheduled time, I had not checked the Electricity Authority of Cyprus site. But around 3.00pm I had a text telling me that the cut would start some time between 3.30 and 4.00. We had been invited to the home of some other friends to eat, so again I wasn't worried from the cooking point of view - but it's much better to switch the computer off rather than have it suddenly go black due to a power cut.

On Friday, it was even earlier. And once again, my phone alert let me know that the cut might start at 2.30. So I was ready for it - and that's when it did start. It lasted for two and a half hours. I'd cooked a curry in the crockpot, starting it around 7.00am so I knew it would continue cooking gently during the power cut.

Friday evening, we had a second power cut. The site had said that it was possible, but this time the phone alert did not arrive until about five minutes after the blackout began at 8.40pm. Still, I had a feeling we might have a second cut and had been carrying an electric torch around with me. Tim lit some candles - it's pitch dark in Cyprus by that time - and tried to read his Kindle by candlelight:

But there wasn't enough light .And it was very humid, which felt worse without the ceiling fans running. So we went outside to sit on the front porch of our guest flat, almost as if we were Cypriots.

No cuts are scheduled for the weekend, and Monday's is supposed to start some time between 3.00 and 3.30pm, according to the EAC site. That means that we should have electricity back again some time between 5.30 and 6.00 so if I plan something in the slow cooker again, there will be plenty of time to use the oven for roast vegetables or similar after the power returns.

Confident that we would not have power cuts today - or, at least, that my phone would let me know if one became scheduled unexpectedly - I did the last work necessary to upgrade our family website, including concluding the notes for my rather rambling and detailed home education diary, ending in 2006 after Tim turned 18 and started on his degree course.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sue,
forgive me for intruding on your blog, but I am unable to find a way of contacting you on the home ed info website.

My name is Sarah and I together with a few other families run a home ed social group in Poole, Dorset. I wonder if it would be possible for you to add our detail to your site please?

my email address is

I look forward to hearing from you.


Anonymous said...

Go solar...