Sunday, May 10, 2009

Fried Snake Darkens the Island

Over the past week we have had the joy of losing our electricity at least once a day. There is no connection between the times of day or even the weather. We may first see the lights dim or have no warning before the computer screen vanishes in front of our eyes (reminds me, hit "save now"). Usually, it doesn't last long. Most of the time we barely even get two candles lit before we hear the beep of the microwave and we're lit up again. We rarely speculate anymore about why we lose power. After noticing the frightening condition of the power line in the picture at right, we just stopped wondering. However, several times people have mentioned to us that an errant snake is sometimes the culprit. Slithering along, apparently an unwitting serpent will occasionally huddle up inside a power transformer, light up, and instantly become fried snake a la carte.

After a recent power outage, Noelle joked about a snake probably causing the nuisance, and Eric commented that it must have been a short snake because the outage didn't last but ten minutes. Then the newspaper came: "Snake Knocks Out Power in Villages." "A brown tree snake [see his attractive portrait at left] caused a ten-minute power outage in several parts of the island Saturday night . . . the snake hit a power line at the Harmon substation, causing outages in parts of Dededo, [and] part of Macheche [our neighborhood] . . . The outage also interrupted the 'Gary V: Live at 25' concert at the University of Guam field house."

"There might be a theological thesis here," Eric ruminates. "A snake initiated the first fall into sin, and evidence suggests that snakes still
spark all sorts of mischief. Oh well, I already finished my dissertation; I'll let someone else tackle that."

1 comment:

Brad Boydston said...

Once when the power was out because of a system failure on a pole outside our complex I talked with the GPA guys as they worked. They said it must have been a snake -- even though they never found a snake or snake remains -- and there are snake guards on the poles. I have a suspicion that the snakes are convenient scapegoats for poorly maintained equipment. (Maintenance has got to be a major challenge in this climate.) In the past they blamed all problems on the taotaomonas. Now they've got the snakes. :-)