A Day Without Power

I began the day yesterday with a call from Johnny alerting me to the fact that Yankee’s web and database servers were offline. I piled Oliver into the car and we sped off to the office to see what there was to be seen. Turns out that the venerable Peer1 New York colo facility, famous for powering through the 2003 blackout, had an “unexpected power loss.” They were awfully good about communication — I got a call both from the NOC in Vancouver and from their man on the ground in New York — and we were back online in about 30 minutes.

Servers running smoothly we piled back into the car and sped off to the Charlottetown Farmer’s Market for our usual, and then spent a few hours prowling the suburban retail jungle, emerging with a new wired Mighty Mouse (the wireless one has been too sluggish for my tastes), a 50-pack of CD-R and a box of 15 ballpoint pens. The cap off our suburban experience, we took in the 1:00 p.m. showing of The Simpsons Movie at the mall.

Which turns out to have been a good show to go to, given that as soon as we got back home the thunderstorm started and the power flickered on and off for several hours.

I left Oliver at home and spend a couple of flickering hours at the office, punctuated by one complete blackout that lasted only a few minutes, and I was back home at 6:00 p.m. to pick up Catherine to drive out to the Trailside Café for the Gordie Sampson.

We had a great meal before the show — I had a spanakopita that rivaled any I’ve ever eaten — and while we had the place almost to ourselves at 6:30 p.m. when we arrived, by 8:00 p.m. showtime the small room had filled with an audience.

Judging from the makeup of the audience, the heart of the Gordie Sampson demographic on PEI is the married mid-50s male with a predilection for hooting once fueled with a few beers. They were mostly harmless and certainly enthusiastic, especially as the night played on. One does have to wonder where all the young rockers were, however.

The storm that had circled over Charlottetown in the afternoon followed us to Mount Stewart by the time the show started and so the evening was peppered with the occasional brownout. All of which only heightened the intimacy of what is ultimately an absurdly good room in which to hear live music, especially of the ilk that in other circumstances would fill, if not stadia, at least big theatres.

The only stain on the evening was the lurking presence of Lord Voldemort (you remember, this guy) at the next table. And thus the ever-present, if completely irrational, fear of imminent disembowelment. Lucky for me, Lennie Gallant was sitting on the other side of us, and so my scenario-planning included situations where Lennie would leap to my defense with some freaky Rustico-style jujitsu should I be assailed.

In the end Voldemort kept to himself, no eye contact was made, and I lived to fight another day.

Gordie Sampson is certainly a virtuoso, and he put on an entertaining couple of sets. If you ever have the opportunity to take in his show, especially at a venue like the Trailside, do so. We capped the night be staying just long enough after the closing credits to hear the aforementioned Lennie Gallant play a tune.

We piled into the car and sped off home, watching the flashes of lightning move east over Kings County.