Hurricane Sandy

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Nor'easter Athena -- a lot of snow.
I've got internet (and television) back now, but I'm only slowly catching up on all that I've missed since Hurricane Sandy hit. I knew I relied on the internet to get by, but it's odd just how handicapped I felt in the week-and-a-half I was without it! I lost internet and TV at around 6:30 or 7pm on Monday evening, just a short while after Hurricane Sandy officially made landfall in New Jersey. We were incredibly fortunate to only have lost communication resources and not electricity, or worse.

It took a few days for things to begin to pick back up in my area and probably in much of New York City. Some people lost their lives, some lost their homes, some people's homes were severely damaged, and many lost power and/or other basic amenities. Typically when New York City is in the line of severe weather, it survives with barely a scratch. In part, I believe this has to do with the layout of Manhattan itself, with its skyscrapers practically serving as a barrier to the elements. The other part, I think, is pure luck. New York City wasn't as lucky with Hurricane Sandy, but I've admired how quickly the city has bounced back from it, and how carefully thought-out the city's evacuation and recovery plans were. For a city that hasn't had much firsthand experience with natural disasters, it sure seemed to have thought of most things before they happened and taken the necessary precautions. Kudos to Bloomberg on that one.

Right now, the city and the surrounding areas are still dealing with recovery in many neighborhoods, lack of electricity in many parts, and a major gas shortage. There's been a rationing system installed, with trucks coming into the city and depositing gas at different stations every day. Even and odd-numbered license plates are allowed to get gas on alternating days. Prior to this system, there was just mass chaos and noise pollution for blocks surrounding gas stations.

And just as things started returning to "normal" in much of Manhattan, we were hit with a freak Nor'easter snowstorm! I got between 6 and 12 inches in my neighborhood (difficult to tell with the snowdrifts). It's been an eventful past 2 weeks, that's for sure!

And of course, things went on as usual. Two holidays came and went. I guess I'd never really thought about just how far a severe storm's reach could go. Halloween was postponed in many parts of New Jersey, and in my neighborhood, children and their parents cautiously negotiated downed trees to take part in trick-or-treating. I felt terrible for them, but was glad to see that some parents were still taking their children out. Election Day was almost a week later, and I was very sure that the hurricane discouraged many would-be voters from voting, due to closed polling sites and lack of gasoline, for starters. It was a really different experience, trying to keep up with the election results without a television and with a really slow internet connection via my phone.

But life goes on. Things get done, no matter the inconveniences or effort it takes. Again, I am ceaselessly amazed by the human capacity to move on after all sorts of hardship. Today is also Veterans Day in the U.S., another holiday. Happy Veterans Day/Armistice Day/Remembrance Day, and thank you to all who have sacrificed for and served your country.

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  1. Gd to know that life is slowly getting back on track. Really hope all is well. The news here did mentioned of another storm and snow. Stay safe.



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