You have a plan set out for the evening, you’re going put the kettle on for a cup of tea, get comfortable on the couch in preparation for the tv show you watch religiously every Thursday. Suddenly, there’s a flick and it’s not the kettle boiling, it’s load shedding.
There goes the plan, there goes the tea and your show in exchange for lighting candles – it’s the worst. Then there’s a ‘but wait’ moment. You look at your phone thinking there’s a chance you could catch the show there or catch up on your YouTube subscriptions but that’s a no too. If you haven’t heard, load shedding doesn’t just kill power, it reduces signal too – isn’t that just fabulous.
Well, now what? What do you do for two long hours? Here’s our list of the best things to do during load shedding:
- TALK DURING LOAD SHEDDING
If you are lucky enough to have company during load shedding, make use of that extra body and talk. Ask them about their day, tell them about yours, even if it goes from there to what you remember of grade two. The conversation will flow (well hopefully) and before you know it, those two hours would have seemed like two minutes. Problem solved.
- PET DURING LOAD SHEDDING
Not all of us have pets but for those who do, take the downtime to hold them and play with them and make them feel loved. We all know it is a bit harder to find the time when the powers on. Remember, one thing your phone can do during load shedding is taking pictures so why not have a family photo shoot, with the flash on of course. For those of you who do not have pets, the next point is for you.
- EAT DURING LOAD SHEDDING
When in doubt, eat. The fridge just went off, so everything is still good. Let us not get ahead of ourselves and resort to frying anything, the power is off, remember? but all is not lost, the ice-cream in the freezer is just starting to defrost so go for it. Get your hands on whatever you can, start chewing and savour the moment, it is going to be a lengthy two hours.
- GET OUT DURING LOAD SHEDDING
If you just cannot stand to be at home during load shedding and the darkness with a faint glow from a candle is killing your vibe, then get out of the house. Take a walk, (not alone) or a drive and try to get out of your grid. Taking a walk to your parents place a few houses away is not going to help the situation, they are in your grid, which means they have load shedding too. Try to visit someone outside of the grid or take a walk in the mall, there are usually generators, most of the time. Heck, the cinema shows movies for two hours and guess how long load shedding usually is? Bob’s your uncle.
- SLEEP DURING LOAD SHEDDING
Life can be crazy sometimes and there will be moments when you are sleep deprived or just wish you had an extra ten minutes in the morning. Load shedding is your chance to get that extra bit of sleep you have been longing for. The issue often lies in the fact that when you want to sleep, you cannot and when you cannot sleep, you want to – Murphy’s Law. We say give it a shot and hope for the best.
- PLAY MARKO POLO
This may sound silly but a game that can flourish in the dark like Marko Polo or Hide-and-seek could be fun or a bad idea – mostly fun we think. If you are not the type to sit around and graze, then a game is the way to go. Marko Polo can be thrilling but it can also cost you a good couple of glasses and vases so be careful. It should get a bit of adrenaline pumping and at least an hour out of load shedding.
If you have never tried meditating, now is your time to shine in the darkness. During meditation, you are supposed to try your utmost best to empty your mind and be still within yourself. Let us be real, load shedding can get your blood boiling sometimes because it can be such an inconvenience, but here is your chance to not let it get the better of you. Be quiet, sit still, let go of everything you are struggling with, lift it to the heavens and welcome the good into your life. By the time you open your eyes, you should feel relaxed and content. The power going on thereafter should just be a bonus.
- HAVE A BRAAI
Look at this as a chance to get your friends and/or family together. So, invite a few people over for a braai session. You can call for a bring and braai too. Trust me, this will be fun.
- BOND WITH FAMILY
Families that come together and share positive experiences build strong family relationships. This is fading so much especially in these modern times. Now you can thank Eskom for making this possible.
- PLAY BORARD GAMES
You may not believe it or want to believe it but before real television and computer games, there were board games. Monopoly was an all-time favourite, as well as Master Mind, Snake and Ladder, 30 Seconds, Scrabble, Draft and so many more.
- READ A BOOK
This will take your mind off the load shedding problem. Reading will improve your imagination. Isn’t this great?
- SIT OUTSIDE AND LOOK AT THE STARS
Do you ever just sit outside at night, look up at the stars, and know basically nothing about the world you live in?
- REFLECT ON YOUR LIFE OR EVERYTHING
No matter at what hour you are without electricity, day or night, you can reflect on your life, past, present or future. Have you reached you goals or are you still striving towards them? What needs to happen for you to get there?
- DO SOMETHING CREATIVE
Start a project like scrapbooking and use the time during load shedding to get creative. At least then you will have something beautiful – and constructive – to show for it!
- LISTEN TO NATURE SOUNDS
When was the last time you too the time to listen to nature? When was the last time you paused to listen as a bird tweeted, or to the soft ripple of a brook, or the rustle of the evening breeze through leaves, or just the whoosh of a sudden gust of wind? So why not when load shedding strikes?
- DO A LITTLE SPRING CLEANING
Doing this will keep your mind completely off and it will keep you busy. It will also benefit you big time!