Part 3: Powerless

So, how does one survive without electricity anyway?  It always seems that when there are power outages people have a lot of trouble functioning.  I can understand if it’s in the middle of the winter and you have no fireplace, or the middle of the summer and it’s 120 in the shade.  But somehow we managed to survive without electricity in the California summers and even in 20 degrees below zero up in the Cascade mountain range in Oregon.

We used kerosene lanterns to light the bus, wood stoves to cook and heat it (and to heat water to bathe, wash dishes and clothes with) and stocked bulk foods like dried beans and rice (although you would be surprised how long butter and cheese last without refrigeration).  Finally, we had books instead of television, radio or computers.


With those books, I got to travel to exotic places, like Middle Earth or deep into outer space.  They became the stimulus for my overactive imagination.  I was inspired to write stories and draw scenes of fierce medieval battles.  I dabbled in a comic strip for about a year too, integrating characters that my brother and I thought up.  We built entire stories around those characters, making our own imaginary TV shows and movies with sets and character histories that eventually morphed into an entire alien race (who was at war with a different alien race).  It wasn’t until many years later that I discovered these activities were the foundation for a career in film making.

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One thought on “Part 3: Powerless

  1. I just can’t stop reading, the post are so interesting and inspiring. You have came so far, and it reminds me of my childhood. I had a great childhood and to an outsider looking in you wouldn’t expect me to say that but my family’s love and strength made it wonderful. One thing though you mention was books. Books and creativity fueled my childhood too. We couldn’t afford much but we could always find a book, some paper and markers. I can’t wait to read more and see how your life pans out. Good luck!

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