What Happens Early in the Morning
"Our goal for today is: not exciting."
Shortly after I started working for my father back in high school I spent a day helping our maintenance guy change out a transformer. When I asked him what our goal for the day was he responded with the prior quote. At the time I didn't really understand what he meant but it still stuck with me for some reason. Years later the words ring true with me on an almost weekly basis. When you have an exciting day while dealing with mid voltage electrical systems, it is usually an expensive day.
Electricity is not exciting when it works the way it is supposed to. That's why you can walk into any room in the house and flip a light switch without even realizing you are doing it. It is no different in the mid voltage world. As long as things go the way they are supposed to it is just like flipping a light switch. A $18,000 light switch.
If we do our jobs right and everything works the way it is supposed to most people will never even notice that the power went off. On Wednesday last week we changed a town over to the new substation that we had been building for them, at 4 o clock in the morning. Of course in order for the change over to happen at 4 am we had to have everything thing in place ahead of time. 13 months of construction, 3 weeks of doublechecks, and an hour and a half of prep work, the morning of, culminated in a 17 minute long power outage for the small Kansas town. Most people in the town never would have even know the power went out if their clocks hadn't been reset when they woke up the next morning.
It was a very boring morning. Exactly as planned. If I had been ten years younger I would have been upset to have been awake that early in the morning for the little bit of nothing that happened. However, with many "exciting" experiences under my belt listening to that transformer quietly hum as it took on the 2.6 Megawatt load the city had waiting for it was the only thing I wanted to hear in that quiet sleepy small town that morning.
I am sure there are many exciting days of work ahead of me in my life but for now my 3 kids and wife are all the excitement I can handle so I hope that those day can hold off as long as possible. But if they can't they are part of what keep us in business so I will do my best to take them in stride.
I hope that is week and this post have found you well. Until next week I am just another confused father wondering...
Why they haven't made a microwave smart enough to remember the time for 15 minutes?