Monday, November 19, 2001

Last night I was talking with Madlene on Instant Messenger when I noticed that my indoor/outdoor thermometer was acting a little strange. The temperature was dropping at a rapid rate. Then it started to rain and very heavy gusts of wind followed. As I was telling Madlene about these acts of nature, the power went out. I told Madlene I was going to have to log off soon, as the battery on my laptop had not yet charged from the night before when we had a blackout. I went to my guest room and got the comforter off the bed, as I knew if tonight was going to be anything like the night before, I was going to need the extra warmth. So I got in bed and waited for the power to come back on. At some point I fell asleep and woke around 7 o�clock the next morning to find that it was not only 35f outside and there was snow on the ground, but it was 52f in my room and the power had still not come back on. I picked up the phone to call a friend in another neighborhood to see if they had power, but the line was dead. My Stepanagert line was working, so I called the switchboard operator to ask if they had power, figuring that maybe it was all of Artsakh. She said no, only yesterday around 6p did they loose power for about 15 minutes. I decided that it was too early to get up, being that it was Sunday and the only thing I had to do was go to Stepanagert with my neighbor at noon and got back into my warm bed. At 11a, I woke again, still no power. I was not about to take a shower, as it was way too cold, but I did wash my hair, being that the bathroom was considerably warmer than my room. I dressed really warm and headed out. Now there are two roads that lead to Stepanagert from Martuni. The shorter of the two is a mountain road and being that a friend of mine was also to come with us to Stepanagert and he lives in a village in the direction of that mountain road, my neighbor was confident that even if there was snow on the road, my car should be able to pass. To shorten that part of the story, I will say that we just barely made it over the pass and God bless that person that invented chains! It appears that all of Artsakh got snow. Babik and Dadik each got a little white cap of snow.

We returned to Martuni via Aghdam, as it was dark when we left Stepanagert and knew that the mountain road would be ice by the time we got to the pass. I had to drive my friend back to his village and on the way back to Martuni, I guess I drove through one big puddle too many, and my engine must have sucked into the carburetor water and died. It�s happened before and after sitting in the dark for about a half hour to let things dry, the engine started and I made my way home. They tell me the power came back on around 6p and the temperature in my room is rising. I think winter has really come this time, though someone in my friends village told me that it really not winter yet, it�s just nature warning us to get ready for what�s to come soon. White walls or not, it looks like I�m going to have to put in a woodstove in my room for those days that we have blackouts.

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