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Yesterday morning started like any other.  Rolled out of bed around 6 AM and already had the Christmas tree lights on their timers, so we awoke to their warm glow.  Moments after pouring our cups of coffee to await the sunrise, the lights went out.  Not just ours, but all those around us.  Suddenly, our town was in darkness.  No longer were the house lights across the way illuminated.  In a moment you would never know there were houses off in the distance as they were swallowed up in the darkness.

Being in my line of work (real estate geared toward preparedness for this sort of thing), my first instinct was to look for car head lights out there in the blackness.  Yes, I saw one.  Then a check on my cell phone to see that I still had a signal.  Yes, again.  At least it wasn’t an EMP.  Living in the Town of Black Mountain, for many of us our first thoughts upon a power outage are that of an EMP which could wipe out the power grid.  That thinking is largely due to the fact that Black Mountain is the setting for the NY Times best seller, “One Second After”.  Apparently we had been spared.

Moments later a text from Duke Energy informed us of the outage saying power should be restored in a few hours.  Reassuring to say the least on a morning with a wind chill of 21 degrees.  Regardless, as the house began to cool, and the familiar hum of the refrigerator or pinging of the hot water radiators went silent, it reminded us of our dependence upon electricity.  What about the public schools that were to open in a couple of hours?  Or how about the pumps at the nearby gas station?  Or what about the retirement homes in the area?

Should this have been a prolonged outage, we could have set up our Goal Zero solar chargers and operated our electronics and lights without trouble, lit a fire and various other things to continue life as normal as possible.  Fortunately, the power returned as promised and life continued as it always does.  But it was a reminder that in an instant, our lives can become a lot less comfortable.  Whether you’re into homesteading, prepping or whatever, I recommend having a back up plan at the ready.  Having a bugout property in the mountains with sustainable resources is part of a good plan for those with the means to do so.  If that’s you, call us today so that we can help you with that preparation so that when the power goes out for a long time, you’re ready.