As a child, I was terrified of the dark.  I didn’t like going into the basement because I had to turn the light out at the bottom of the stairs and RUN up the stairs so no bogeyman could grab me.  I didn’t like cracks in my curtains where someone, or something, could peek in at me.  Who cared that half of my childhood life was spent on the second floor of our house, something could still see in, in my mind! Now I live in the country where it is DARK.  We’re a mile off the highway in a little bowl of security.  No headlights driving by.  No streetlights.  A yardlight IF we turn it on.  I only have valances on my windows… full curtains don’t exist in my life anymore.  The only thing that lights up my nights now are moon and stars and the wonderful electricity from Big Horn Rural Electric Association.  On a RARE occasion… this is what we use.
Gorgeous lamp and an antique chair.  Amazing how dark life used to be.  Even when you do this.
Two oil lamps and a kerosene antique lamp before a window still don’t put out enough light to really read by… not at my age with my vision!  I could have pulled out a few more… and my candle stash… and some battery lanterns… but I figured that was overkill, it was just Vernon and I and it was rather calming sitting in the dark.  Can you hear me, Mom?  I just said it was calming to sit in the dark!  Betcha she never thought I’d say that!  My favorite is always this.
My fireplace.  Being a Girl Scout and loving to go camping probably had a lot to do with getting over my fear of the dark in retrospect.  I can still get scared in a house in the dark… and even outside on occasion if my sister and I have been discussing UFOs or Bigfoot or mountain lions.  But darkness doesn’t have the same power over me that it used to.  Darkness is more my friend than enemy.  I love the stars.  I love the quiet punctured by hooting owls or howling coyotes.  Scariness has become something other than darkness.  For instance, scary is seeing your husband hook a guy wire with his little backhoe and yank the top of a power pole off, especially when the transformer on that pole lands only 10 feet away from him.
See… there’s the transformer on the top of the pole which is now resting on the ground.  Look really closely at the pole and you can see a crack on the entire pole.  See how the E and A is not in line with the R.  They used to be!  That was spooky.  Here it is from the angle I saw it happen.  See why I was a tad concerned?
Vernon safely escaped.  The power cut out immediately.  In fact, the power was out for 21 hours for us.  They got the rest of the line going, but since this happened at almost dark, we told them to not bother with fixing it in the dark.  We had a gas stove for supper, a fireplace for heat, and lamps to light our way.  In fact, Vernon felt so bad about this BIG mistake, he told them to take 2 days if the weather turned nasty.  The big REA boss was amazed we’d say that, but like our local REA guy said… “We’re survivors up here.  It’s no big deal to not have electricity.”  The darkness isn’t scary.  Scary is when you think of what could have happened.

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