This is our first evening in darkness. Without streetlights, the roads are gloomy and a little creepy. We were told by our guardia not to walk to the movie theatre a block away, but we risked it anyway. The huge 'Supercines' was all lit up and movies were running, so business was brisk and we brought Maya to the Michael Jackson movie. We paid for three adults, and pretended that Maya was twelve, since the movie was for twelve and over, and they take their censorship seriously here. We tried to take her to a movie a few weeks ago with a 16 and over restriction and she was refused entry. The irony is that the same movies shown in the cinema are sold in the DVD shop next door, and there are no restrictions on DVD sales. All DVDs are pirated, and are often out immediately when they open in the cinemas. Sometimes the quality is awful, especially when the DVD is videotaped right in the movie theatre, but the price is right at $1 to $1.50.
It was a shock to see Michael Jackson rehearsing for his show shortly before his untimely death. When he died I tried to explain to Maya who he was and what he accomplished, and showed her some Youtube videos, but they did not quite communicate enough. The movie showed his remarkable dancing and the incredible show he was planning, but mostly it kept us out of our dark apartment.
My ingenious husband bought a car battery today and attached it to the wireless to maintain internet during power outages, and I am impressed that it works. We are fine with flashlights and candles, and I am able to cook with gas, so we are truly not that inconvenienced by the outages. Eric also bought a solar panel and plans to utilize it to power some lights. We are informed that electricity will be rationed for several months, so we must prepare. I am thankful that the powers that be are following the schedule for shutdowns, and I appreciate the predictability.
Looking for Rain
Meanwhile, everyone is looking at the sky and the mountains and talking about rain, or the lack thereof. It looked like rain on Pichincha today, and at times the clouds gathered over the city and promised a change in the weather, but then I was told that raining in Quito did not help the hydroelectric reservoirs, that it was near Cuenca that rain was relevant. I was told that rain in Quito meant rain in Cuenca, but later that they were not related and from another source I was informed that rain in Quito meant no rain in Cuenca and vice versa.
And the sun still shines intensely and relentlessly and the skies are a brilliant blue and it is warm and lovely and I fell guilty that I wish for sun everyday and appreciate it so much. My Spanish classes are outside, because the lights are off at the school most mornings, and it is warmer outside than inside the building.
There is no guarantee that rain will end the rationing. It may take months of rain to fill the dam to capacity. I think that we are all resigned to living in the dark for some time., and making the appropriate adaptations.