So we had that nice respite and a bit of rain. With the dip back into the high 90s (35-37 degrees Celsius), my summer Seasonal Affective Disorder abated enough for me to realize that that’s what’s been going on. Yay!
We’re back into the low 100s again (38+ degrees Celsius) and now Texas’s electric grid is all messed up. Yay.
The last two days, we came very close indeed to needing to have rolling blackouts to alleviate the stress on the grid. The website has five statuses for the grid — green means everything is good, yellow is a request to reduce electric use, orange is a firmer request to reduce usage, red is “I really mean it — reduce your usage,” and black is “too late — we’re going to make you reduce your usage by instituting rolling blackouts.”
We went into the yellow both yesterday and today.
Why is this happening? Because Texas insists on having its own grid, so when our wind farms aren’t producing enough electricity, we, well, don’t have enough electricity to go around. We can’t borrow electricity from other states that have more.
They’re predicting more of the same on Saturday and Sunday.
Well, you know what I don’t need electricity for (at least in daytime — unless my power bank batteries are charged up and I can keep my phone charged through the blackout)? Reading! And for today’s Gratuitous Amazon Link, I should have the first (and maybe the only?) Rick Riordan book that I didn’t find to be a page-turner, The Mark of Athena. In The Mark of Athena, Percy’s group finally reaches Rome (and I love Rome!). I think the problem is that Riordan bit off too much here. After two books rotating among three characters, suddenly we have six characters’ points-of-view to balance. It’s still a great book, don’t get me wrong, and it’s kind of necessary to get to the next book in the series, but I think I’m going to post something else as my Gratuitous Amazon Link.
And that something will be The Sunset Route: Freight Trains, Forgiveness, and Freedom on the Rails in the American West, by Carrot Quinn. Quinn grew up in a difficult situation. Her mother was mentally ill and she was then adopted by her grandparents who were, by her account, not a whole lot better. After that, Quinn hit the road. One thing led to another, and she ended up as what used to be called a “hobo” — riding the rails illegally and taking odd jobs.