Summer. What are the first thoughts that go through your mind? I’m sure you think of things like boating, swimming, grilling, baseball, ice cream, traveling, air conditioning and sunscreen. Me too. I also think of storms and power outages.
This summer has been very kind to me, in the sense that J.O. has not been called out to work a big storm…yet. For many of my fellow line wives, I can not say the same. I’m sure you have heard at least once on the news this year about the damaging storms that have past through towns and states; leaving thousands without power for days if not weeks. What you may have not heard about are the thousands of lineman that have been working day and night to restore the power.
Many travel across the country to help work through the night to help restore power so that society can function as normal. This special force of bothers come together from near and far to get the lights back in as short of time as possible. They choose to work overtime if need be, because they know that those extra hours of work will help thousands of people and businesses. Sleeping for a few hours in their work trucks, eating from gas station stores and drinking a lot of coffee. J.O. and many of our friends have often been called out in the middle of the night; with a bag of clothes and their tools they don’t know how long the restoration will take. Hours? Day? Weeks? Months? But off they go to turn the lights back on.
The Fourth of July is in a few days, and with it being my favorite holiday, I am so (selfishly) grateful that as of now, J.O. has not been called out. I know that there are many families, however, that will not have the same luxury this holiday. Many will be away from home, working throughout the summer heat, in the rain and other ailments to do their job proudly and help others. We always pray that they will return home safely.
If a storm has made it through your town and you have found yourself without power, try to be patient, unfortunately it is not always a flip of a switch. When the crews show up to work on your line, I ask that you remember what they have worked through, how far they may have traveled, who they are away from and know that they are trying to help. Bring them a cold beverage or a snack or even a just a smile to keep them going, not an impatient attitude. They are doing their best to get your life back to normal.
One final thought, please visit the National Sisterhood United for Journeyman Lineman website, here. It’s a Non-Profit organization that is near and dear to my heart. They help the families of fallen or injured lineman. With all the storms that have been going on this year, the high heat and electrical banks at their capacity, there have been far too many injured.