Above: It looked much nicer in an upright position.
First, the ‘SuperStorm’, Sandy. Then there was an earthquake, right in my neck of the woods. I kid you not. And now, six inches of snow on top of the already weakened trees, downed power lines, and tarp covered homes like mine. At this rate, I’m almost expecting to see locusts in the upcoming weather forecasts for New Jersey and the surrounding states. Last night I spent wakeful hours listening to the driving snow and 60 mph gusts batter the house. This morning began with mopping up where the storm found its way in to my kitchen and spare bedroom, which had been my home office. And yet, relatively speaking, I’m feeling pretty lucky these days, which seems to surprise most everyone who sees our home.
Minutes before the tree came down the radio reported the storm about to worsen, so my daughter and I decided to take the dogs out for what we imagined would their last walk for the night. Normally we take them out back, but she felt one tree out back was swaying just a bit more than looked right, and suggested they get down to business faster on leash, out front. We were standing in the lawn as the wind made an eerie moan, and dogs in tow, we bolted back to the house just as there was a terrifying crash and leaves showered down around us. We rushed inside to discover the damage. Had we gone out back, rushing back to the house at the very same moment we had, we would have been directly beneath the tree as it hit.
So yes, I feel extremely lucky. And I feel lucky that we still have most of our roof over our heads, (even if it now resembles Swiss cheese,) which is so much more than so many others affected by the storm. The house can and will be rebuilt, while staggering numbers of homes throughout the region are beyond repair or gone entirely. Our home is still here, still livable, and my boat is one of the few in my region that survived, even as so many of the marinas around me were completely devastated. When I hear the news speak of the ‘victims of Sandy’ I realize that technically, I’m one of them. But I don’t feel that way. I feel lucky. Very lucky. And now that things are under coming under control here, I’m heading out, doing what I can to help others out there who weren’t as lucky.