It’s become commonplace here in Mwanza. It’s Sunday so they switch off the electricity. Week by week it’s the same routine. From just after sunrise to just before sunset the electricity stops.
TANESCO, the national supplier, gives no reason for this only a message telling us the cuts will occur.
Whether it’s power shortages or a new power grid being created is unknown. It is probably the latter as on route to Tanga we did see people up in the pylons laying cable (not pictured!).
Whatever the reason it can be a frustration. Last weekend they cut the power on Saturday too – which gave us a Powerless Weekend. So all day our fridges and freezers slowly defrost, the water dribbles from showers and taps (no pumps), TVs and Radios remain silent. Unless of course you have a generator- we do but it is rarely switched on and if so we must unplug fridges, electrical ovens, kettles irons etc due to the high power consumption. Part of the frustration of being a European in Africa!
This blog is posted by the power of 3G, (or possibly Edge) as we have no WIFI. After a day without water on Sunday, today has been a day without power in Mwanza. This has been a planned power cut, for reasons unknown, which has lasted from 9am until now ( it is supposed last until 6pm!). Luckily at Isamilo we have our own generator so I was able to teach today (ICT without electricity would be a chore!). Unfortunately the generators have not been used here at home – so it could be a dark night ahead if timings slip. We had a taster last night with an hour long power cut from 6:30pm ’till 7:30pm. Not fun has we were cooking dinner at the time (at least we have gas!).
With no power the water is back to a dribble. It turns out the water issue on Sunday was virtue of a power cut at the waterworks (no power = no pumps and we live in a mountainous region).
After two months in which utility-wise there were no issues – suddenly we realise we are in a developing country – either that or 1970’s Britain for those who remember!
T + 3
I am sitting waiting for the kettle to boil. I am listening to the amazing mix of bird song – from the familiar cockerels, doves and sparrows (there are sparrows here though subtly different – still sparrows) and the unusual cries and warbles that make this place exotic.
Last night, the remaining new colleagues arrived (due to a family wedding we had come a day early so that family could see us off). Their flight had been worse than ours due to problems at Heathrow; surprisingly the weak link in the whole journey. After a shared Pizza at our place – organised by the school they all retired to bed and we settled down to watch a DVD. We have managed to connect the PS3 to the TV and were nearly all the way through Mission Impossible when there was a Power cut. It was late so we turned in.
I am used to being able to share these impressions immediately and enjoy the feedback via WordPress or Facebook or other social media. Therefore it’s strange to think that I don’t actually know when this will be posted. The generosity of neighbours has allowed us a little connectivity and I have been able to send short emails and post something – but I don’t want to take advantage.
On the schedule tomorrow is a trip to town to sort out connectivity so hopefully we can be more connected soon, but for now we’re out of touch.