Since I live in NYC, I’ve been following the weather and news pretty closely from various sources. I left work early yesterday, and it was closed down today. All transit has been shut down, evacuations taking place, and the Ward/Stake communications network is in place. I live up a hill, so I’m not worried about flooding. I went for a short walk this morning to pick up a few more supplies, and the reactions vary broadly. Some places are boarded up and closed, others open like usual. Fewer people are out on the road, but I saw three runners in twenty minutes. And I’ll confess, one reason I went out was to see if I wanted to run in the weather. (RunnersWorld had some good humor on that.)
So far, it’s not much different than any other storm. Constant drizzle, but not hard rain. Wind, sometimes really strong wind, but I haven’t seen any downed trees or even big branches yet. It’s selfish and shallow, but I enjoy extreme weather; it’s a change in schedule, a little uncertain, and fun… up to a point, obviously. My wife’s trapped in the Chicago area for a few days, so I spent the day cleaning with streaming videos in the background, reading Saving Darwin as deep cultural background affecting how we instinctively read Genesis (post to come!), and eating through anything that might conceivably go bad quickly in the fridge, if we lose power. That means an indulgent cheeseburger, ham/pineapple/olive pizza, and chocolate-chip banana bread (all of which I produced myself.)
Tonight is when we expect the worst, and it really is set to be a perfect storm. As I understand it, the hurricane will meet up with a severe weather system from the west, and a cold system from the north, all on the day the tides are highest (full moon) around the time of high tide. 23-ft high waves have been reported in NYC harbor, and we’re still building. We’ve been warned to expect loss of power, perhaps for several days. And transit may be permanently damaged, due to the antiquity and sensitivity of equipment. If I have power and internet access, I’ll post an update or two in the next few days. And perhaps Kent can chime in from his neck of NYC.
Stay safe people.
Update: I woke at 4 am, to a near-complete absence of wind and rain. Our area has had some minor power outages (individual buildings), but it appears the majority of damage has been done by the odd falling tree or the flooding, which has been quite bad. One co-worker has lost his house and car, and they weren’t even in evacuation zone A. The MTA is evaluating, but multiple tunnels have flooded and it sounds bad. Red Hook, about a mile downhill from me, is home to Ikea, Fairway, and some of the best food trucks around. And it’s mostly underwater now. I’ve been called in to work to assess things. Edit: Here’s a nice collection of images of damage.