The Storm One (#25)

So, Sandy.

We, personally, are unscathed. We had more damage during the non-storm on Memorial Day when three trees fell on our house.

The estimate is that 150 trees are down in our neighborhood, but our only inconvenience is that we don’t have power yet and probably won’t for another week.  Gas is hard to get and the commute into the city to work is a different adventure every day.

But the grocery store is open and stocked; we have hot water; the stove works. We even have a generator that runs as long as we find gas for it. By all counts, we’re lucky as hell.

Yet even that is enough to send me over the edge. The logistics of day-to-day living have never been my forté, ever, long before I somehow became responsible for helping with the logistics of six other people besides myself and two dogs. Now it’s all about logistics and it takes all my energy to make anything resembling normalcy, and I feel like a complete asshole as I stare down my limitations; limitations both in my attitude and what I’m able to make happen.

Because this is nothing like narrowly escaping your house after it breaks into three pieces and gets sucked into the Atlantic. It’s nothing like having your two children swept out to sea right out of  your arms. It’s not a damn thing like losing everything you own. It isn’t like having your houseboat now docked in someone’s back yard, seeing your drowned neighbors pulled out of their attic, not having access to clean water or food or heat anywhere, or dealing with how the hell you clean up when on Tuesday the sea was in your house halfway up the second floor.

I’m very lucky and it’s time to start acting like it.

Jersey Boys is going to be part of the telethon tomorrow on Good Morning America to raise funds for hurricane relief. We sure would appreciate it if you tune in and give a donation if you can. The cast is arriving pre-dawn, I’m arriving pre-cast, and the guys that run the show get there some time around one a.m. (even though they don’t have power either and their commute is also an adventure).

Extra pictures today because I felt like it.

Cemetery Tree

Here are your links.

Here’s where you can donate to the Red Cross.

To help find gas in the area, check out GasBuddy. Twitter is a good resource as well; this article lists several potentially useful Twitter handles. Your local paper is also a good bet.

Pictures of boats on train tracks: New Jersey Transit

Crazy-ass pictures of the hurricane’s impact on the city: The Grist

We all need to laugh, and sometime can stand to change our stinky attitudes. Here’s one of my all-time favorite posts on Hyperbole and a Half: Sneaky Hate Spiral.

The best remedy for a sneaky hate spiral is gratitude, and I have an awful lot to be grateful for. Here are two, illustrated:

As a direct result of last year’s storm, I have a tiny pumpkin growing in my “yard”!

For Jack, everything is business as usual.

I would love to hear what you’re grateful for. Happy Sunday.


13 thoughts on “The Storm One (#25)

  1. JM: TechSupport is supposed to travel to NYC this weekend with 80 other kids for a Spanish trip. They would be staying in a hotel in Elizabeth, NJ but traveling to NYC in the day time. The company won’t tell us if the trip is canceled yet. They aren’t psyched to have to refund money. Obviously. But there is no way, right? I mean, how are TWO buses going to get down there and even gas up for a trip into NYC for 3 days? And then gas up to get back to Rochester? The NY Marathon was canceled the goodness sakes! People don’t have power! Traffic lights are out. How are they supposed to get anywhere? #Duh!

    Meanwhile, I am so sorry to hear about the devastation in your community. Jules’ photos were hard enough to see — so many beautiful trees down. Here, it seemed to be mostly willows — with their heavy leaves and shallow roots, they didn’t stand a chance. Thinking of you and yours and glad you are okay.

  2. I’ve been wondering about you. Glad to hear you didn’t suffer damage. My heart has been on the Jersey Shore my whole life, and even more this past week… Thought of you when Broadway went dark. Day by day. It’ll get better.

  3. I was just thinking about this today, writing tomorrow’s post in my head about how I feel terrible that I’m complaining when other people have it so rough. What they’re going through doesn’t negate what I’m going through, but it certainly gives me perspective for gratitude. And compassion.

    I’m glad you and your family are safe, as well as your home! I hope a lot of money is raised to help those who were not so fortunate.

  4. I am grateful that the worst thing I had to contend with today was a sleepy little boy reluctant to nap. The sun is shining here, my son is snoring, and I am safe and sound.

  5. I’m glad you and your family are ok. I hope you get your power ack soon. I know that must be so frustrating.

    We were super lucky and never even lost power. I was so happy for that at least. And I even got 2 days off of my hateful job, without having to use vacation. That was a nice side effect.

    Good luck!

  6. I am so thankful that my husband, kids, and I are all safe and sound after the hurricane. I am thankful for neighbors who fill up our gas carton every once in a while because we are running a line from our generator to power their fridge. I am thankful to be fortunate enough to shop at Target for things that other people need and cannot get at this time. I am also thankful to see teenagers shopping at Target for those who are in need (please, God, let me have teenagers like that someday). I am thankful for somehow having the internet even though I still don’t have power or cable. Finally, I am thankful for you sharing the Sneaky Hate Spiral post. Hilarious (and totally true).

  7. I’m relieved to read you are doing well, all things considered, JM. Disasters like this certainly put things in perspective quick. My heart goes out to everyone struggling right now.

  8. I can’t stand that story about the mom whose babies were swept out of her arms. I can. not. fathom it. I have this way of tricking myself into thinking there is always enough time to do everything I want to do. Times like this get me focused in on action, because, we just really don’t know.

  9. I am so glad you’re okay and so unbeliveably saddened to hear of and see this devestation. It is unreal the power of Mother Nature and very scary. It’s hard for me to fathom way over here in Western Canada what you all are going through. But my thoughts are with you. BIG HUGS!

  10. JM! First of all, you rule. AND you have a pumpkin?!

    I’ve been feeling the exact same way – frustrated by my own frustration. We got power back Sunday night, and then lost it again at 5am this morning (though supposedly it’s back on now, according to our neighbor). You just can’t do anything normally. And with you trying to get into the city – oh vey! But you’re right. We got so very lucky.

    I hope things are starting to return to normal for you (or…you know…as normal as things get with 5 step kids and 2 puggles ;))!

  11. My humans went through hurricane Charley in 2004 so they know precisely what you went through. It took EIGHT weeks for them to get power back in Bokeelia, FL. While they didn’t have the cold to contend with, they had heat, insects and governmental snafus. The house was SEVERELY damaged. This was before Katrina and since it was a lot less densely populated area it didn’t get the coverage. It took the Geezer and wife 31 months to get their house back to “normal.” Good luck in recovery. Sandy

Comment. It gives me a reason not to clean my house.

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