When a Zimbabwean national tells you: "Everything is fucked up," and he is not speaking about his home country but rather the electricity problem in South Africa well then, things are dismal.
Case in point - these power cuts. Eskom calls it 'load shedding' - what a very flowery way to say we have rolling blackouts. I am not sure how bad it is nationally, but Johannesburg is a disaster.
It all started in the second half of last year when they occasionally cut off power, maybe once or twice a week at night because they did not have the capacity. Gradually it became more and more often (different reasons for the lack of capacity at each time) and for these past eight days it has been everyday numerous times a day, each blackout lasting two to three hours.
I tried to go shopping but I had to abruptly stop. I tried to meet my deadlines early, but could not...my work flow was interrupted more times than I care to mention. I tried to publish this post on other occasions, but the electricity got cut. Traffic is a nightmare. You would not even want your mortal enemy caught in it.
There was an intensive campaign recently to educate people how to use less power, like switching off your geyser for example when it is not in use. I am sure the message hit home so why are we in this position?
I have now resorted to doing my work at night - it is now 2:33am - and to mail it through to my editors. Might as well do it now when there is power to do so.
We have a World Cup Soccer in 2010 and they say this problem could last for the next eight years! For the love of everything pink, can Eskom just do something already? Can they just team up with the necessary stakeholders and get their act together? C'mon this ain't the effing Dark Ages! Unless these guys want to take us back there.