A lot of people around the world look forward to the summer each year. It’s not quite the same for a lot of Batswana because the summer brings with it a myriad of irritants, including scorching hot days and uncomfortably sticky nights. As if the extreme heat wasn’t enough of a challenge on its own, there’s also the rain, which brings with it explosive thunder, spectacular lightening and sometimes strong gale force winds.
Now some may think surely rain must bring some relief from all the heat and fills up parched dams across the country with much needed water; so why complain? For me personally, a wet rainy season is a double-edged sword because Botswana as we all know, could use as much rain as we can possibly get, given the severe lack of water we’ve faced for years and years. The more rain we get, the more water goes in our dry dams, the less chance of water rations.
However, I’ve come to hate Botswana summers not just for the uncomfortably sweltering days and nights, but even more so for the dreaded power cuts. Whenever I hear the rumble of thunder and see lightening, my heart sinks. That’s because you just know it’s not a matter of if, but rather when the power will go. When the power goes, we’re plunged into darkness for a few hours if we’re lucky, or even days in some instances. Sometimes it only takes the slightest gust of wind, and poof! the power goes.
It’s all very frustrating, irksome even, for so many different reasons. I hate having to rush around looking for candles, going to bed hungry because we can’t make food, worrying about possible damage to electric appliances, our precious perishable food items going bad, not knowing for how long we’ll be without electricity, among others. But most of all, I hate that I don’t have a backup system and worse still, can’t afford one. I don’t relish the idea of using candles for obvious reasons.
The Ice Glow Lantern –No Back Up System, But Neat Little Invention
Which brings me to my latest find, the Ice Glow Lantern. Recently, I was doing my weekly groceries shopping in Spar supermarket when I caught sight of this funky looking ‘thing’ and wondered what it could be. Curious to find out, I picked it up and realised it was a light of some sort. Retailing at just over 40-Pula at Spar, and given the tiny size, I wasn’t convinced it would be much good. Even still, I decided to buy two on the spot to give it a try.
The funky Ice Glow Lantern takes three AAA batteries, which you can find at any local supermarket. I bought mine at Pep Riverwalk, because they were cheaper there.
As soon as I got home, I had to try the lanterns out, so I put the batteries in and pressed the little button on the side. I was amazed at the amount of light it gave off! I tried it again later in the evening when it was darker, and this little lantern is a great find. It gives off so much light, that it’s enough to illuminate one small room. It’s also got a small hook underneath that you can use to hang it upside down. I loved it so much I went back and bought two more a few days later.
At 40-Pula each, I think the Ice Glow Lantern is reasonably priced and would highly recommend it to those on a tight budget like me. I only wish it came in various sizes so I could buy bigger ones. So far I’ve only ever seen them in that size.
I also found them at Square Mart at the CBD, although they were slightly more expensive there.
Reasons to Buy the Ice Glow Lantern
- Much safer than candles
- Not as messy as candles
- It won’t break the bank
- Easy to use
- It would be ideal for camping
- Surprisingly, it illuminates better than candles
If like me, you don’t like candles but can’t afford more a sophisticated back up system; the Ice Glow Lantern would certainly be a fantastic substitute for candles. Try it, I’m convinced you’ll be happy you did. It may not be enough to power up your TV, computer or cooker, but at least you’ll be able to see where you’re going and not have to worry about burning the house down.
Photo credit: Gary Ashworth