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Generator review: Journalist Vicky Parry takes a look at how moving to the countryside in March 2020 suddenly gave her a need for a generator.
Moving to the countryside in March of 2020 provided a real safe haven for me and my family. However, as someone who grew up rurally, I was more than aware of some of the shortcomings of living in such an isolated location.
To begin with – food. There would be no cheeky Wagas when I was too tired to cook or noodle soups delivered in 20 mins when I felt sick. I would need to be super organised and have food in my deep freeze on all occassions. I was also aware that getting my conveniences would be a longer job, not quite something I can nip out and do on my lunch break anymore, so again I would have to be super organised.
Therefore, I began a Marie Condo level of organisation and preperation for the big move: monthly checklists and things to overcome, to make my transition from city dweller to country bumpkin as pain-free as possible. Little did I realise, however, that when we moved, we were mere days from an interntiomal pandemic and that the world would close (because why on earth would we have foreseen that!). Nipping anywhere was going to be totally off limits and the toilet paper subscription was about to come in mega handy.
Something I hadn’t accounted for was that in the second week of lockdown, a farmer would have some sort of altercation with the main electric source into the village and we would have two days with NO ELECTRICITY!
Suddenly my obsessive prep saw me with about five months worth of “essentials” defrosting overnight and my livelihood, which was now from home, completely dependent on my accessing a power supply pretty urgently.
It was about this time I started looking into getting a generator. Something that would have seemed utterly pointless only a matter of weeks previously suddenly had my mental wellbeing (and literal wellbeing) tied up with it. I didn’t, however, want one of those monstrous things, the size of an oil tank, filling my beautiful new garden.
With this in mind, I contacted EcoFlow and they offered me one of their River 2 flow generators in exchange for a review.
In truth, this type of generator is ideally suited more to camping or outdoor activities (I have used mine for projecting a film in the back field) and whilst very different to a charger pack, they offer multiple plug spaces and the power to run multiple appliences all at once. Therefore, although limited, I could work, keep my food fresh and charge my phone all at once.
Yes, I managed to get my freezer on for seven hours and then the very easy and fast solar charge meant I could keep doing so until the power came back on, with no thawing… whilst, it isn’t maybe ideal for an appliance of this size, in truth it worked fine and I would far rather store somehing of this size. I also find myself using it far more than I had expected. Suddenly running my electrics from the garden is no qualm at all and on occassion I have taken it out to my writing shed and used it for boiling the kettle and a lightsource without having to look into mains power connection.