Monday, 29 October 2012

The Ironies of Modern Life


Along with belt-tightening of various kinds, come efforts to defeat the 'system' or at least to bring down one's monthly bills.  South Africa until four years ago, had some of the cheapest electricity in the world. Then someone woke up to the fact that no maintenance had been done for many years (hence a flurry of irritating power cuts), and no forward-planning had been done either. New nuclear power stations are now planned at huge cost, and we have had annual increases of 25% on our accounts for the last three years.  This year they are asking for 16%. The populace is already reeling under massive increases in the cost of gas for our cars and thus many of us have had solar systems installed, if only to heat our water.  This is after all a land of much sunshine throughout the year. The net result for my family home is that we now have lots of free hot water around lunchtime and early afternoon. As we don't use much at this time of day, I have started to wash all the dishes/utensils (that my husband won't allow in the dishwasher), once a day around lunchtime.  Further, I find I am washing more and more dishes by hand that ought to go in the dishwasher.  This is because we are also experiencing soaring costs related to water consumption, as our rivers and dams become increasingly polluted by industry and housing development under a government that closes its eyes to any expenditure that does not line the pockets of the politicians. I had welcomed the arrival of our dishwasher (ten years ago - we have been a bit backward in SA compared to the US), as a labor-saving device.  Now it uses too much expensive water. Oh well...

7 comments:

  1. Well at least your politician know how to line their pockets. But I would gladly send you a few of ours who would vastly improve the wealth of your top 1%.

    If you don't hear from me in the next few days, don't be surprised. Hurricane Sandy is heading our way. I don't think I will have power for a while. Fortunately I live in Pittsburgh which is far inland. The coasts and the mountains are really pounded. One to two feet of snow in the mountains, storm surge on the coasts. High wind everywhere.

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  2. I have heard that it uses less water to use the dishwasher than to do them by hand, but i really don't know if it is true.

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  3. Been watching Sandy on the TV this morning. Looks very wet indeed in New York. We actually bought a small generator 2 years ago (forward thinking). I see 250 000 homes are without power in NY today so far.

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    1. The situation in NYC is dire. Lower Manhatten is flooded and I heard uncomfirmed that there was 4 feet of water in some of the subways. Nasty.

      Here we have a nice blow going with lots of rain but so far fairly civilized. Lost power for 2 minutes about 1 1/2 hours ago. The wind has definitely picked up. Sandy is now about 10 miles SW of Philadelphia, moving this way but is supposed to swing north then east. Of course it has weakened since it got over land, but it is still a very serious storm.

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    2. Well I didn't blow away. Very windy overnight but the wind died down. We still have a lot of rain and flooding potential, but at least the wind died down in our area. The coast and New York City has been devastated. We only lost power the one time, but a lot of people do not have power right now. Terrible storm.

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    3. I am so glad you escaped the worst. So very sorry for the New Yorkers. Is it climate change?

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    4. Well that depends on your political party affiliation here in the US.

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