Ark (almost) on the Street. Full Power!

My SA blogpals will fully understand this tale,

So, the dogs start to go spare out front.

I wander  out my office and walk to the edge of the property to see what’s getting them all riled up. Ah … a municipal truck from Escom (our electricity supplier)  is parked right in front of our mains electric box, and four workers armed with tools have descended on the box.

Sheesh … what now?

A couple of polite inquiries as what they were doing with our box elicited the phrase … ”We’re working!”

In some circumstances this might be considered a pleasant change however, that was not the point of my inquiry.

Two more calls to the lady in charge, a slightly raised voice is necessary as we are quite a ways from the street, had no effect.

So, I tootle down the drive to find only one worker, the others having scooted across the road to a neighbour’s house.

”We are fixing a problem for 66.”

Are you indeed. Well, far be it for me to tell you your job … but I shall.

”This box only serves this house. My house.”  Escom decided to install above ground mains connections – saved digging up the street apparently although this still seems a bit odd and they will (eventually ) be putting outside meters as well. Although it seems not every employee was at that meeting or read the memo.

”You see,” says I, ”the problem is, when they put this box in they didn’t do such a good job ( with a lot of boxes I subsequently noticed on my jogs around the suburb) and it is not set level in the pavement, and the plastic cover ( none of them are secured and can be lifted by a child) does not fit properly and if you are not careful it knocks the switches and trips the power.”

”Did it trip?”

”Not while I was in my office. But I am down here now, and I am the only one home at the moment so I can’t call anyone up at the house)  Have  you lifted the cover off?”

”Yes, but I will check.”

‘No … no don’t …!  ”


Sigh …

She then reset the fuses replaced the cover. No click.

However, what neither of us noticed was that her rough womanhandling of the cover had dislodged the live wire from one of the fuses, so by the time I realised, after traipsing back up to the house, and saw the modum was off, they had packed up and buggered off, after finally realising the correct electricity box was on the other side of the street but somewhat further down.

Yes, it’s on that side of the road … way down there.

I re-emerged with no sign of the truck and I knew I would have to the reconnecting job myself, as if you lodge a fault you will wait a least a couple of days for them to come out, and we cannot afford to be without electricity.

So, after the crew arrived back home, I armed myself with a screwdriver, pliers, bicycle clips for my trousers in case I mess myself, and my jangly nerves – I utterly loathe mucking about with electricity – I grabbed Ems and we went down to reconnect.

And just look who we found had made her home inside the electrical box! Isn’t she a beauty?

Brown Button Spider. In Northern Climes they are referred to as the Black Widow. You can just see the red hour glass marking on her abdomen.

We have the Black Button as well, which is more venomous.

This is the largest specimen I have ever seen. A real whopper!

Probably the only spider of ”medical significance” in South Africa.

We gently, yet firmly  relocated her into a sandwich box, with sandwiches too,  left on my wall by one of the workers.

That’ll learn ’em! Mwahahahaha!




PS. Just kidding about the sarmie box, by the way!



10 thoughts on “Ark (almost) on the Street. Full Power!

    1. One would have thought that they would know prior to coming out where the correct box was situated?
      Demonstrating once again that commonsense is in actual fact a rare commodity indeed.
      On the bright side … look at the spider we found!

      Cor blimey!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I am sure from time to time it happens all over. However, it is the safety aspect that really gets me. Or rather, lack of safety. These boxes are made of lightweight hard plastic and none are secured against tampering … as you read from me having to reconnect one of the fuses.


  1. The whole thing about electricity is not (R) not to complete a circuit with you in it.

    I remember reading years ago that in the States they tried an entirely new approach and instead of insulating their workers they insulated (double, triple?) the platforms they were working from.
    But for many older hands they could simply not—despite all rational arguments—get them to do as told and actually handle the hundreds of thousands of volts naked cables with their bare hands. Funny … neither would I …

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am stunned , yes stunned, not by the way you reacted to the spider as that is totally full Ark mode, but your description of the electrical boxes. This park we live in now is one of the most lax in the electrical connections and meter boxes we have seen and still ours are metal with clip seals or other secure device. In fact we have behind our home in our back yard the big secured into and rising from the ground boxes that hold the mains and then the meters for four homes. The guy who mows our lawn found one of the main panels off. I called the electric company and they sent a guy right out to put a new panel on and secure it. There was no wait time. Is all the power set ups like yours or is your street an older one that is waiting for an upgrade? Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

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