July 10, 2010
Let There Be Light
I needed to hear it a few times to understand that the constant question “Is there light?” means “Is the electricity still on?” Blackouts are a constant threat of everyday life and doing business, and my host says the reason that the cost of living is so expensive here is because a shop has to own a pricey generator to get anything done. It also means you can’t buy anything from the grocery store that has to be chilled; thus no milk, only powdered milk. There are simply too many people in Lagos for the limited electric grid, so neighborhoods have to take shifts with limited energy; we don’t get electricity in the early afternoon, for example, along with any times (at least three a day) the electricity decides to give out on its own.