After Hurricane Sandy

As a Floridian, I have experience with hurricanes, from those just glancing past home, to the eye of the storm coming right on top of me. I have gone through too many storms in my life, and I have cleaned up after them. For the most part, it has not been too bad; I have not had to deal with much more than picking up debris and helping my friends and neighbors. I cannot imagine what the residents of Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut are going through now.

I have survived hurricanes and tornadoes in the Sunshine State. I know what it is like after a storm. The consideration that makes this storm in the northeast undeniably horrible is the cold.

In Florida, the weather can almost be pleasant after the storm has passed. For many, the worst thing after the storm is dealing with the heat and humidity while waiting for the electricity to come back on. It is a time of playing cards, working and talking with neighbors while cleaning up, and listening to the sounds of nature through the screens while sleeping with the windows open.

From what I see on the news from the areas affected by the storm, I am very sad for my northern neighbors. I could not face the cold the way many have to this morning. Cleaning up after a hurricane in Florida is something completely different from having to deal with temperatures down in the 40s and 30s.

When the temperatures dip below 65, I am uncomfortable. Below 50, I become downright comatose. (Yes, I am a wimp in the cold, but I function well in the heat.)

The devastation on the news channels and the Internet is appalling.

Also disturbing are the number of people without power this morning, without gasoline in their cars, and running out of food. Those who have lost everything sadden me. It is obvious they were not ready.

For the storms I have been through, I was not ready; but I think more so than those who found themselves in the path of Sandy. The sad thing about Sandy is that many local governments and those involved in the infrastructure did not anticipate well enough.

This is borne by the fact that gas station owners cannot get gas out of the tanks in the ground, hardware and grocery stores cannot restock their shelves, and authorities are moving slowly in resolving these and other issues. The time after the storm is really some of the worst we humans can endure.

The best way to get through a storm is to board up everything and leave the area. This is to do, but we who live in the target area of the Atlantic storms know that sometimes, this is the safest recourse.

After the hurricane has passed, you can always come back to clean up.


©2012 J. Clark

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