7

November

Hurricane Sandy Can’t Dampen Packers spirit.

Hurricane Sandy - Packers fan“Sandy, the aurora is rising behind us.
The pier lights our carnival life forever…

- Bruce Springsteen

There was no aurora rising behind Hurricane Sandy and I, rather it was merely a dark gloomy sky, darker than I had ever seen in my neighborhood. There were no porch lights or street lights interrupting the view of the NJ sky. There was also not a star to be seen, just cloudy eerie darkness…

The power went out at 7:15PM on Monday.  My wife and mother-in-law (who we had convinced to stay with us to ride out the storm) were most disappointed that they would be missing Dancing With the Stars. What can I say?

It was my good fortune to have purchased a generator a few weeks earlier. Not because I was Nostradamus and had foreseen this storm coming, it’s just something I’ve always wanted to have for cases of emergency, tailgating, outdoor activities, etc.  After hurricane Irene, I promised myself I would buy one, yet it took more than a year before I finally did so.

The weekend before Sandy’s arrival was spent in preparation. After having brought in all the deck furniture and anything else that could have become a flying projectile, I cracked open the still-in-the-box generator, did some minor assembly, prepared the engine and fired it up. Everything worked great, so I filled up the tank and went out and bought another five gallons of what would unbeknownst to me soon become like gold in NJ – gasoline.

Monday afternoon, I came home from work early, setup the generator outside, ran some extension cords in preparation and waited. When the power did go out, I sprang into action, starting up the generator and connected my sump pump, refrigerator, some lamps, a TV and kitchen appliances (coffemaker, toaster, etc.).  Initially, we even had cable TV and internet, but that didn’t last more than an hour.

One interesting thing that I realized: the DirectTV Satellite service I have (just to watch Packers games, basically), will always work as long as you have some form of power. So despite cable being out, we had TV, which proved to be an emotional Godsend.

Soon the strongest winds came. Trees bent in unnatural ways. I was sure I would lose my tree that had barely survived a nasty Halloween snow/ice storm a year ago. Unlike  Hurricane Irene, there wasn’t much rain. That was a big break for some local businesses and residents that had been flooded out by Irene. Some were just now getting fully back on their feet.