Of Coffee With Sand

If you were having coffee with me, I would welcome you to my tangle of words and ask if you are in a heat wave or cold snap… We are apparently in a cold snap. So you can have iced coffee, regular coffee or just sand.

coffee mug with sand

Why is there sand in the coffee mug? Oh that? Don’t worry, you wont have to drink it, we are not 6 anymore playing at a tea party. I am amazed when I look at the things 6-year-olds do these days on their iPads, when we were six we were playing outside and eating mud cakes.  Anyhoo, the sand in the coffee mug is so that it can act as a candle stand in the dark since our electricity situation has gone back to its unpredictable settings.

If you were having coffee with me I would also tell you that there aren’t any candles in the house, they ran out. Good thing phones these days came with a torch or  flash that can masquerade as a torch 🔦  Now if only the power company could at least give us a sort of schedule of how the power outages are rolling out. Currently all we have to work with is this notice asking us to brace for increased load shedding.

Life is super stressful when you live a life of waiting, wondering when the lights are going to go out, then wondering how long it will take till they get back again… How can you make any sort of plans?

Watching the battery percentage count down on my phone gives me anxiety as I worry about how I will charge it when it eventually powers off and having to explain why I suddenly wasn’t available during an important online meeting. I get scared when I have to make a presentation because what if the power goes?

If you text me how I am and I reply with this emoji 🇿🇼 I am saying that I am in the dark 👀

We should have had coffee the day before, but here we are, my laptop battery ran out and that was that… Today, today I am racing against the battery clock, the laptop tells me I have limited running time left, so do forgive typos I miss…. Yeah, so from full battery charge I have around 3 hours of usage time in power saving mode…

I envy those whose machines can run for half a day, oh and laptops with keyboards that light up…. I don’t know how well you can type in the dark, I am terrible at it 😂

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that our government projects that by March of 2023 the electricity situation will improve upon completion of an upgrade at Hwange Thermal Power Station. This is thanks to our all-weather friends from the East who have gifted our country with 1.5 or 1.2 billion depending on which publication you use as your source. The Hwange 7 and 8 Power Station Expansion Project, will add 600MW of electricity to the National Grid.

Hwange Expansion image credit ZBC

Additionally, they have also built our new Parliament building and gave us money to expand the Robert Gabriel Mugabe International airport. How awesome is that? Although at the back of my mind the question remains what have we agreed to in return… as they say, there is no such thing as free lunch.

The other question is shouldn’t we be worrying about the climate impact on expanding coal powered electricity generation?  Hey as long we have electricity right? Do you want us to not have electricity? For the record, 70% of our power is from hydroelectric power according to the Q1 2022 report by the  Zimbabwe Power Company.

Kariba Power station contributed 70% of the total energy

Interestingly ZESA (that’s the Zimbabwe electricity authority) and ZESCO (the Zambian Electricity corporation) were slapped with a US$12,1 million fine for over-utilising water at the Kariba Dam by the Zambezi River Authority in accordance with the provisions of Statutory Instrument No. 109/199 (Water Tariff) By-Laws. The Zamabezi River Authority wants the two power companies to reduce electricity generation….

Kariba dam

If you are having coffee with me I would tell you that our inflation has gone up, how crazy is that? But hey at least we are still number one. Can you imagine, people suggested that the USA should be renamed to USZ because of the way the president is failing to manage the inflation.

But one can see things aren’t headed in right direction by seeing how our telecommunications board has already approved future price reviews (read that as increase as prices are never reviewed downwards) for mobile network operators. Maybe the indicator that we are headed in the wrong direction is in how Mbuya Nehanda is facing a different direction from other currencies.🤔

Salaries don’t get reviewed with the same urgency, so is it a surprise to find there are industrial actions loading?

we are workers not servants

Did you ever eat a mud cake? Whats been going on in your neck of the woods?

~B

Coffee with sand

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20 Comments

    1. and the power just came back yay… but honestly a schedule would be great so I know what to expect… not this knock knock surprise… magetsi aenda 😂

      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh dear B! That’s so awful to not know when you have power and when you don’t. I’m stressing out thinking about it, YIKES!! I’ve never eaten mud pies but I’m sure I made a few as a kid!! Hang in there!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. hahaha who ate the mud pies you made.

      As you can imagine its a rather stressful lifestyle but hey we are here still taking names and making history too ^_^

      Thanks for visiting
      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I live in town Fife Avenue, there are lots of hospitals and surgeries around and we have never had electricity probs in the past until this year, we have gone for weeks with no electricity, m coping with much difficulty but I worry for the patients admitted in nearby hospitals, what if the hospitals run out of fuel for their generators and a patient is on ventilation considering the hikes in fuel prices.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was shocked a few weeks back about that issue with Miekles Hotel where they send out a memo to guests that due to electricity challenges if anyone wanted hot water to bath would get a bucket sent to their room…😅

      You are definitely right that it’s not a time for one to be on intensive care and needing ventilators etc 😱
      A friend’s parent passed away from Covid, they had bought a ventilator but then because of zesa 🤷🏼‍♀ – and their solar could not power up the ventilator 💔 stories like that can really break you.

      But I’m definitely looking into getting solar it’s definitely less hustle and cheaper in long run(though more expensive to set up) than a generator 🤔

      ~B

      Like

    1. I do have powerbank to charge up my phone.

      I’m looking into getting an entry level solar backup system that can power up lights, internet modem, laptop maybe even the TV 🤪

      ~B

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, and then there’s the fuel situation with its rising prices and never being certain you can find the fuel at the service station.

        Used to have a small genny (its gone to generator heaven now) -two stroke engine, was rather noisy and not too efficient (no wonder it was “cheap” got it for $50 pre-loved) once had an interesting adventure trying to find the fuel for it because at the time government had banned people from using containers to buy fuel saying thats what fuelled fuel shortages as people would buy fuel and sell on black market – eventually had to go with the generator and ask them to put the fuel into it directly at the service station 😂 similarly people who ran out of fuel faced challenges when they tried to get emergency fuel via their jerry cans – I guess someone hadnt quite thought through that ban haha

        Of Coffee With Petrichor

        Anyhoo I dont want to have add fuel woes onto my worries ^_^
        ~B

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m still stuck on the part where you shared that whenever someone asks you how you are you reply with the Zim flag! So hilarious yet so relatable. Happy to be back to enjoy how you find positive vibes even in the most inconvenient spaces.

    Great post B!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahaha this teapot shaped country will really test one’s everything…. next I think even on a CV when they ask for examples of how you can work under pressure you just put a Zim Flag 🇿🇼
      A bit of laughter does sweep away the cobwebs
      ~B

      Like

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