That happened to us during the big ice storm a few years back. We were withoutIf the power goes out for an extended period
power for 26 days in our rural location. Even the big shopping centers within an hour's drive had no terminals running,
so yes--it was cash or check only.
Though we had a generator we couldn't get gas because the local stations had no power for the pumps.
After five or six days you could get gas 24 miles north--but it was a very long wait in line every time. Every store in town was sold out
of gas containers. I saw one pickup with the bed entirely filled with them. You could not find a store with D cells, and the flashlight aisles
The lucky few had gas/propane generators and were able to get propane locally--now we have one as well.