Hi I'm trying to deepen my conceptual knowledge about electrical systems. I'm definitely a lay level, tradesman level user here. I'm lucky if I can do some simple algebra, so I don't want a lot of math (though I might get into that later if I want to get deeper into engineering). I have some basic questions that never seems to get answered by your average "plumbing analogy" descriptions about basic electricity. Literature like that always seems to start you off with a battery, tells you one side has an excess of electrons (charges) that want to move through a conductor to the other side where its electron poor, or overall positively charged, and that creates voltage (electrical pressure) and amperage and so on. However they always seems to say that the charges flow "from one point, through a load (some appliance) and back to the source" and things. I need to clarify: it seems to me the electrons flowing from one cell of a battery to the other are not coming back to their source but rather moving to the other "pole" (right terminology?) which is by definition separate from the source because it needs to be electron poor. then it comes into electrical balance after a while and the battery is dead. but its still got 2 cells and the whole point is that its NOT flowing back to the voltage source, but going somewhere else to enrich it with its charges, i.e. the other cell in the battery. If I could just clarify that then it might be easier for me to understand the power grid. I understand that ac voltage/current is generated by steam turbines whirling great magnets in induction coils and so on, leaves as 3 phase ac current (by the way, is there current in the power lines or only voltage?) and gets stepped down by transformers and things finally to end up in your house as 120 volts ac. it electrifies the hot bus bars, and then moves on out through breakers or fuses as usually 15 or 20 amp branch circuits. Then it retruns to neutral bus bars which are basically grounds. So my basic question which I can never seems to get answered, is - what is the other "pole" or side of this circuit? You've got current being generated on one end and going through houses (loads) but where does it end up? back at the power plant? in the ground? Or am I oversimplifying this somehow? Does the fact that its ac complicate the question and if so how exactly? and a related question is - does ac current just basically flow through power lines (or any wire) in a sine wave pattern but propogating forward just like dc would? i.e. basically a wavy line versus a straight one or is there more to it than that? Thanks a lot, Will p.s. if you're not already tired of this can you explain how a "reverse current" recharges a battery (i.e. in the case of a car battery)?