In South Africa we've moved on from talking about the weather, to talking about loadshedding... If there's nothing else to complain about, this will quickly become the go-to topic across social media!
But this is Africa. We're adaptable, and we've been working around self-centered inept governance for generations.
So don't panic! It's only electricity!
What we're getting very good at as a nation:
Treating traffic lights as 4-way stops. We're getting a whole lot of practice and people are becoming considerably better at it.
Braai-ing. If you couldn't before, you can now. Provided you can grab a bag of wood before they all sell out, then get your fire going and the food cooking before the power comes back on.
Thumb-twiddling. Especially if your employer doesn't have backup power. There was a complaint recently that "now my employees have to sit and look at each other" - horrors!
Alternative entertainment. Some have reported the kids have started playing outdoors...
And for those of you with absolutely no imagination, who are tied into the grid for entertainment and edification, here are some ideas of what to do when the power's off:
Go surfing / boating / swimming / flying
Go strolling on the beach, walk the dog, run, cycle, climb a mountain. You have (on average) 2 and a half hours to slot in a bit of exercise.
Sex. One Facebook user queried though whether Eskom will be paying child support for those conceived during loadshedding...
Candlelight dinners. Plan ahead and you'll have hot food ready just as the power dies.
If it's dark out when your turn comes, star-trail photography is a great option - no disturbing streetlights around. If you're not into photography, go lie on the lawn and just look at the stars.
Talk to your significant other / family / kids / neighbours. No electronic distractions.
Potter around the garden. Two and a half hours can get you pretty far in the planting, weeding or bush-clearing department.
If you're at work there's always filing! Or clearing out your deks drawers / re-arranging the furniture / giving your keyboard & mouse a deep-clean.
Meditate / do yoga / sleep / sit quietly and watch the birds - get in some silent r&r while the noise of the surrounding world is dead.
I'm amazed how many people panic when the power dies. In our little town, a good portion of them get into their cars and drive around aimlessly. Or go looking for someone who can make them take-away food. Or crowd the only shop that might have a generator going in their area.
But there really is no need to do so! Instead, we're getting a fantastic opportunity to get out of our electronic worlds and rediscover the real one around us.