I am not quite sure how to begin this post. I guess I’ll start by saying that I usually try to be funny, try to make fun of myself, try to make my darling readers feel good about themselves, and have a good time in the process. I’ve done a few product posts in the aftermath of Sandy but she was ever present the entire time. She came through NYC not quite like the Tasmanian Devil. Instead, she held fast like Aunt Gertrude staying way beyond her welcome. I digress- I don’t want to offend any Gertrudes, but you get the picture.
When Sandy blew in on Monday, there was a lot of rattling and shaking. The wind was howling, the street signs swaying noisily. The stoplights hanging above swung ferociously. It was strange- the wind came in gusts and sometimes, like an older sibling, pushed its way down the street screaming, “Get outta my way!” I watched from my front door, amazed at the storm, for Nature telling us, “I always get the last word.” I didn’t see a drip or drop of rain. My front steps remained dry, just Sandy yelling and shoving. The power went out at 9 PM. We were lucky that was all we lost.
We woke up the next morning. Hubby lit the stove. I made eggs. We got ready to head over to my mom’s when suddenly the power went back on. We watched the news, charged our phones, decided we needed more half & half, and took a walk to the avenue. It was relatively quiet but a few people were out. The bookstore was open, we spoke to a few people. A tree was down a few blocks away, some people had no electricity, some did, but no one was hurt, no one was missing. We went home, had dinner, and at 9 PM the electricity went out again. We went to my mom’s and hung out, slept over, and today is now today.
I am avoiding discussing the sheer devastation. I have friends that have lost everything. EVERYTHING. I have friends who have family members that have lost it all. I have a friend from high school whose parents are in the Rockaways and I think about how scary it must be not knowing how they are doing, how life will go on. It almost reminds me of that fateful day 11 years ago (11 years but who is counting?) when I was in college, getting ready for class and I turned on the TV. The world was jolted from her axis and the “Now what?” hung in the air like cigarette smoke. Now what? Now what? Maybe this isn’t of the same magnitude, but maybe it is. Maybe the idea of rebuilding to something bigger and better is not so easy or comforting when you have no idea where to start.
We need to remember to come together. We need to remember to have each others’ backs when the chips are down. We need to remember that we are probably luckier than the guy next door or down the street. We need to remember to be kind, courteous, careful- to watch what we say, to be thankful for what we have. We need to ask, “Do you need help? Do you need anything?” without expecting something in return. We can’t be out for ourselves now. And we shouldn’t be ever. We need to remember that. Be safe.