Posted tagged ‘Sandy’

“There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.”

October 30, 2012

All is well here. Sandy left a mess of pine needles, leaves and branches but no damage. Even the lights stayed on, a phenomenon in these parts, though they did flicker a bit to give us pause. During the day I went out a couple of times to pick blown covers off the deck and put them back over the furniture. A light rain was falling so I had to be careful walking on the slick leaves covering the deck. The backyard has the most fallen branches. Half of the front lawn has disappeared under a sea of brown pine needles. Sort of pretty in its own way.

It was near the water where Sandy was the most devastating. The ocean was mighty with huge, fierce white-capped waves, and they, combined with Sandy’s wind and the high tide, dragged buildings into the sea and flooded roads. The paper this morning is filled with pictures of beached boats, damaged buildings and fallen trees. For the second day in a row, there is no school.

I went down my friends’ house last night for dinner and games. Mine was the only car on the road. I took the long way around and circled the neighborhood to check it out but saw nothing. Later, as my friends and I were sitting at the table, we heard the rain. The drizzle of the day had given way to a heavy rain. I got soaked just going to and from the houses and the car.

I awoke this morning to sun, but it has gone. The day has darkened, and the sky is filled with clouds. Rain is in the forecast. I’m okay with that as I have nowhere I need to be and nothing I need to do.

Yesterday I battened down the hatches and on the deck took down or put away anything which the wind could carry. The breakable bird feeders were the first taken down. The covered umbrella was leaned against the rail so the wind wouldn’t smash it to the deck. Later, I saw the bird feeders which hang off the trees swaying high back and forth so I went outside and took them down. This morning all of them were hung back on the tree branches.

The one thing I most worried most about was my palm tree. It is tall at 6 feet and too awkward to move so bringing it inside was not a possibility. Yesterday was dark enough to trigger the timer so the palm tree was lit all day and well into the night. Before the storm hit, I got a bungee cord and nailed one end to the deck then wrapped the other end around the thin, metal trunk of the palm tree. I checked the tree several times, and it swayed but never fell. My palm tree has survived a hurricane.

We were lucky yesterday.

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass…It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”

October 29, 2012

Today looks ominous with a gray sky, a wind already making itself heard and rain. Tracking Sandy is the focus of the day. Regular TV has been superseded by storm center programming on all the local channels. Pictures of the roaring surf smashing against the sea walls make the most impact. The ocean is angry. Yesterday the governor closed all schools for today, asked non-essential government employees to stay home and businesses to close as to keep people off the roads. The storm has been described as a mean, nasty beast.

The wind is picking up. Right now it is 40+ MPH which doesn’t seem all that wild, but combined with the rising seas, it is causing swells which are flooding parking lots, eroding beaches and threatening seaside homes. The ocean with its huge white caps and smashing waves is the most visible evidence of the coming storm. All three TV stations are reporting from the Cape, and their reporters are standing on piers with bobbing boats behind them and spray all around soaking those reporters and silencing their microphones. I almost want to head to Corporation Beach as I know the ocean will be the most dramatic there as it pounds the rocks and floods the parking lot, but I’ll not throw caution to the wind. I’ll stay home, safe and warm for now.

Gracie isn’t at all affected and neither are Fern and Maddie. Today is just a dark, rainy day to them. All three are taking their morning naps. The birds have found refuge: none are around; even the huge blue jays have gone. I wonder where they go to wait out the storm, can’t be the trees as they’re swaying in the wind. I figure under eaves or overpasses must provide some protection.

The hurricane has yet to arrive.

“It is better to meet danger than to wait for it. He that is on a lee shore, and foresees a hurricane, stands out to sea and encounters a storm to avoid a shipwreck.”

October 28, 2012

Sandy most decidedly has my attention. Yesterday I got a robocall from Nstar, and this morning it was the Dennis Police Department. I was warned to brace for hurricane winds, rain and electrical failure. I have a few things yet to move on the deck, but they’re small and will take only a few minutes. I got 8 D batteries from the hardware store, no rush of people there, so my mega lamp is ready. My iPad and my phone are charged. I may go out for a few goodies later, but mostly I have enough food. I do worry a bit about pine trees as they sway in even small winds, but only one tree is near the house. It’s now wait and see time.

I remember Hurricane Daisy even more than Bob because I was young and totally impressed by the wind and the rain. It hit New England in August 1958. My sister had just been born and was kept in the hospital a couple of days because she was under 5 pounds, and they did that back then. My mother was relieved the baby was safe. With no power, my mother couldn’t have heated bottles. My dad took us out during the eye of the storm. The light was eerie; the sky a strange color. I don’t remember any sounds: no birds, no cars. The oak tree across the street had fallen on the road making it impassable. Its tree stump still had split shards from the trunk. I remember the inside bark was white. In my mind’s eye, I can still see all the small branches usually up so high but now lying on the road close to my side of the street. My brother and I sat on the trunk, and we walked through and around the branches. That something so huge could fall made a lasting impression.

My dad, sensing the start of the wind again, brought us inside the house. I remember watching out the window and seeing the leaves blown about as the trees swayed. I will never forget the sound of that wind.

“There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.”

October 26, 2012

I woke to a lovely day, warm and sunny. The birds were in full voice, and they drew me to the deck. I watched Gracie sniff the driveway already covered in yellow leaves and pine needles. On the outside branches of the oak tree the leaves have browned. Most will soon fall but some will hang on through the winter fluttering in the cold wind. It is the oak tree I can see best through the window in my den. It is a barometer of the changing seasons.

Today is dump day, Gracie’s favorite day. I haven’t told her yet, but she’ll know soon enough. Right now she is sleeping beside me on the couch and snoring. Life is good for Gracie

Sandy is the headline on the TV news and in the papers, but we are in a wait and see pattern as to how destructive the storm will be here though it has already been dubbed Frankenstorm and described as ghoulish. Utility crews have been out cutting branches and making sure lines are cleared anticipating wind and trying to prevent power outages. I doubt they’ll be too successful. Power outages are common here even without the wind. I often hear the loud bang of a transformer just before the lights go out. I have an empty larder so I’ll hit the supermarket today before the crowd arrives to buy all the water and the batteries. The water part still amazes me. I get that people with well water will lose their pumps but most of us have town water which will flow regardless of electricity. My list has the everyday items, the boring ones, but I’m also including crackers, a variety of cheeses, dips and chips. If I have to sit and read by the light of the lantern, I want my taste buds to be happy.

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