Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Bringing home the bacon

There are some things that you will just never understand. Not even if I could find the right words to describe them. Like today, the feeling of realizing that our freezer had defrosted. It was gutting. We haven’t had electricity for over a day now. Not that you miss it much. It’s pitch black at night but then that’s what kerosene lamps are for and not having a fan on does make for a miserable night’s sleep, but apart from that we have a generator at the office so we can get through a day’s work without too much discomfort. So, it’s not surprising that I didn’t think about the freezer until this afternoon and then it hit me like a ton of bricks. Not so much the freezer itself (that would hurt) but the realization of what was in the freezer. Bacon. Four packs of bacon to be precise. The saying is true that you don’t know what you have until it’s gone and there are luxuries we simply don’t have here – mostly because they’re illegal. Bacon and alcohol being the two that spring to mind most readily. So when someone ice packs and carries in four packs of bacon for you those are precious commodities. Commodities that you freeze and save for an especially bad day. Commodities that you don’t eat all at once and ones that you sometimes like to open the freezer and just look at. And now they’re gone.

I’m alone at the moment. The rest of my team is in other locations, or on R&R, so there’s no way I could eat four packs of bacon on my own. I called up a friend at another organization and asked him if his team would like some. Of course they readily agreed to take them off my hands. And so, with appropriate solemnity and grief, I delivered the precious, albeit luke-warm packages to IRC. It was one of the darker moments I’ve had here when my friend greeted me at the door, grinned, and thanked me for ‘bringing home the bacon.’

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