Thursday, November 30, 2006


It rained heavily yesterday. Ground saturated, etc. Today I finished work, and decided to head over to the new Costco and check 'er out. Today was opening day and I was swept up. I had stopped by yesterday, expecting them to have opened up early. They hadn't, but were running a nice little foyer operation where they were accepting memberships. I signed up.

Anyway, I got over by there, and saw a firetruck and a bit of a backup. I soldiered on, figuring a car had exploded or something. No way. A high voltage line, I'm guessing a 40 kilovolt, had fallen into a saturated drainage ditch. It must have just happened, because the power was still on and it was putting on a nice physics demonstration. It was causing the water on the ground to steam up, and it was sparking in the steam, so it looked like some kind of ball lightning looking thing.

And, of course, the power was out at Costco. Now me, were I a high powered retail giant, would make darn sure I had a generator hooked up. I would think the losses from one day of outage would be enough to justify it. But no, they just had enough for a little emergency lighting. Poor.

Compounding matters was the fact that this place is at 159th and Ravinia drive, and it was rush hour. And I was pointing in the wrong direction. I bet it took me an hour and a half to get home.


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