I’ve been busy these past few days. Hurricane Sandy, or what the weather forecasters in full Armageddon mode are calling the Perfect Storm, part deux, is bearing down on the Atlantic States waiting to take a left turn and make landfall on a pathway pretty much where I live. I am far enough inland to be spared the Tidal brunt of the storm surge, but the forecasters are calling for very heavy precipitation as the storm stalls and intensifies, along with high gusting winds. Likely result – flooding and power failures with fallen trees.
As a result, most of the weekend was spent in preparation of the storm’s wrath. This is the height of falling leaves, and I cannot begin to estimate how many cubic yards of leaves were raked up and mulched. All the drains were given a good cleaning, and I also had some fun up two and a half stories on a ladder cleaning out the gutters. Anything not bolted down was brought into the garage. The generator was brought out of storage and tested – all systems go. Batteries all stocked up, lanterns ready to go, and plenty of candles as well, just in case. I made the mistake of running out to the grocery store to pick up a few items last minute – big mistake! The place looked like a throwback to the Soviet Union. I was amazed at the empty bread shelves, no milk to be found, and eggs all gone. No wonder folks need to stock up on toilet paper in large amounts! I left, for it wasn’t worth waiting an hour for coffee creamer. Black will do just fine in a pinch.
I decided to get out and take advantage of the early voting allowed in our precinct. Oh the irony! Early voting is supposed to eliminate long lines on election day. This is the first time I decided to vote early, and the result is the longest I’ve ever had to wait in line to complete the process – about an hour and a half. I suppose all the other fellow citizens were wondering how their vote might be counted if there are power failures now that the ballot is electronic. Got my vote in just in time. The early voting will be shut down for the next three days until Sandy blows over. The closure may last longer should there be a sustained power failure. Last year, Hurricane Irene caused outages that lasted almost two weeks in some areas of the State.
It’s now raining in the wee hours of Monday morning. By Tuesday morning, the storm will be making its pass overhead. Nothing left to do but sit back and take whatever Mother Nature decides to dish out. So here’s a little mood music to drift off to sleep by, courtesy of The Doors.
Stay dry everyone!
I was away for the holiday weekend and was prepared to write about that experience, especially in view of the fact I deliberately enjoyed it unplugged. I relished the fact I was completely disconnected from the world for a few days. I was refreshed and looking forward to the tons of e-mails, messages, blog reading, and commenting that awaited me when I returned. That is, until the weather happened…
I returned home and to work on Tuesday as the remnants of Hurricane Lee, now a Tropical Depression, pummeled our area relentlessly with enormous amounts of rain. Yesterday from 11 am to near 1 pm, we were hit with a concentrated pocket of more than 5 inches of rain. The sheer volume of water overwhelmed the saturated ground and storm drain system, turning streets into raging rivers of rainwater.
There was little warning and many cars wound up trapped as they waited, mistakenly in this case, for the bands of rain to subside and the drains to do what they were supposed to do — siphon the storm water off the surfaces of the roadways. That didn’t happen. In fact it seemed as though the storm was stalled directly overhead as the rain poured down in torrents all while the flood waters were rapidly rising. Some motorists took the chance to rush through and made it; others were forced to abandon their cars in the street, to be fetched or towed hours later.
My Company owns and manages a number of buildings in the Historic downtown area, so most of my day was spent with any and all our staff surveying the flooding, dealing with power outages, and a lot of bailing and water removal. The work is not yet done as we’ve gotten more rain overnight and sitting here this morning as I write this, it is still raining.
Well, back to managing the flood waters. I hope everyone remains dry and safe. Someone, please send some sunshine our way!