Right now it's a $2,000 paperweight sitting in our garage, but by next week our generator will be hooked up, providing an insurance policy for power outages.
With zero confidence in our power company, National Grid, we've taken comfort into our own hands.
The next time we hear a weather forecast that mentions freezing rain, ice, snow or high winds, we won't shudder, scrambling for flashlights, batteries, water and canned food.
The next time we see tree branches teetering over vulnerable power lines, we won't cross our fingers. The next time we see our lights flicker, we won't prepare for four days without power.
In the cold weather, we appreciate the kindness of neighbors and convenience of an office shower. When it's warm, we appreciate the swimming pool for morning baths and a place to fill our buckets so we can flush the toilets.
But now we're in control. When the lines go down and National Grid calls for its trucks in Michigan to drive to New England, we'll be warm, showered, fed and watching DVDs in the comfort of our home.