Besides high screams against power cut, there seem to be quite a few merits to it. Taking into account the power cut schedule (8 a.m. to 10 a.m.; 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in my area in Udhagamandalam (Ooty), I see that the usual morning tension is chilled. For a busy 24X7 mother like me, this is actually favourable.
Earlier, all mornings witnessed blasting TV volume, hot water geyser boiling till 10 a.m. with idle men still in bed, in spite of active school kids getting ready in haste (with my help alone). But, good God, now.....
Everyone is ready before 8 a.m. and off to work before 9.30 a.m. only because all electric and electronic appliances are off! Unusual silence, yet solace!
It's even wonderful during weekends to see children playing out with no cartoon films pulling them in, hot spicy meals getting ready with the traditional ammikal (grindstone in Tamil) masala and the idiot box showing an empty screen!
All these days, the serial episodes had put age-old people in a nutshell, keeping them sick in their sick beds. But now, as worms crawl out of soil for sunshine, they even try to toddle towards the doorstep.
Nature looked different. Though the ‘streetlight learning' system is strange for students preparing for their examinations, the noise of TV from neighbouring houses has stopped.
Sleeping books from idle shelves are dusted and borrowed for reference, ignoring the trendy Internet hard copy, school projects, photo albums that once peeped sadly now jump happily on laps, browsing centres are cleaned, library membership cards are renewed, water is drunk cool from earthen pots, the natural buttermilk is back as the healthiest dessert, the pedalling sewing machine back in action, remote controls are free from sweaty palms, stubborn fingers that held fast to computer keyboards and mouse are now touching the neglected pens and papers, clothes hand-washed or dhobis well paid for stiff and starchy iron, recorded mantras and loudspeakers in temples giving place to traditional instrument play, hard-fans giving exercise to wrists that were stiffened with mobile phones, calls made or answered on landline phones, food neither stored in refrigerators nor re-heated in ovens, but freshly made and immediately consumed, and what not!
I do understand that compared to large-scale industries (that survive with generators), small industries are affected owing to long hours of power cut, but in an even smaller ‘industry' like a home where women handle any situation with or without electricity.
I could see more on only the positive side-effects of power shutdown. Television is one big necessary evil that has put all mouths shut but kept only eyes and ears open.
Power cut has many positive psychological results for children, women and senior citizens. Children play with ‘real' friends outdoor, forgetting ‘virtual' ones; women try out something new with their talents during leisure (TV) hours; senior citizens spend time with nature or their grandchildren.
Of course, men are not exceptional. Now, they could see their wives' faces better than before or ‘sacrifice' the time they spend with TV laptops or mobile, now for their family members. The indoor playground named ‘computer' can now rest for a while, when people can shout, scream and play active in the open air. Where have all these energies gone till now? Why have we let the child in us die? Was it all because of these electrical and electronic appliances? Shocking!