We were in pretty good spirits on Monday because we had bought a lot of food in preparation and it was pretty warm inside the apartment (as well as outside). I spent my power-free time cleaning the entire place and feeling pretty good about my productivity. In the evening, James entertained us by singing (sort of) and dancing (totally). After he went to bed, we had a nice evening of drinking wine and chatting.
How to entertain a toddler in a blackout, Monday night
But things were getting kind of old on Tuesday. Getting up with James at 5 a.m. on Tuesday morning in the dark was not fun. I had to juggle a flashlight and his breakfast, and him, and there was no entertainment or even light for reading, beyond the flashlight. It wasn't light out until 7:30, and I was too bored and tired to wait until James's nap so I woke up Kevin to take over until naptime. On Tuesday we were antsy to get out so we took a walk around the neighborhood. That's when we realized it might be a long time before we got power back. And the temperature was dropping.
In front of our home
On our block
Power lines in the street
A prepared local business
In our neighborhood
More trees down in our neighborhood
A tree that hit a house
It was really cold Tuesday night, and we decided that we should probably go somewhere Wednesday. My mother lost power too, so we couldn't go there. Ash had generously invited us over even though her parents were already staying with her, so Wednesday afternoon we drove up. Driving around, some places had traffic lights and other places didn't. We saw crazy mile-long lines for gas in New Jersey.
Gas lines in New Jersey on Route 17 near Ramsey
We listened to the radio in the car, and we heard for the first time that Hurricane Sandy was the largest Atlantic hurricane on record by diameter to date, spanning 1100 miles. It's official categorization changed several times in the 5 days it took to travel from the Caribbean through New England. On October 29th it brought the most damage to the Jersey Shore, Lower Manhattan, Staten Island, Coney Island, the Rockaways. In the US, it cost at least $20 billion (but possibly over $50 billion in business interruptions) and at least 97 people died due to the storm. Today we found out that one of those people was a student at Stony Brook and we are so sad about it. I feel so terrible for her family, friends, professors, and the University community.
Wednesday was Halloween, so we let James run around Ash's house in his costume, and my mom was even able to come over and see him so that was fun. We haven't been up to much since then because a lot of stuff in Ash's town is closed due to power loss as well. We're on Day 5 and we still don't have power at home. About 900,000 people lost power in Long Island and 400,000-500,000 still don't have power. The Long Island Power Authority has no real estimate of when we might get power back, though they're guessing next weekend. That is shockingly bad, and we're obviously going to have to figure something out since Kevin has to go back to work on Tuesday, and it's supposed to be 33 degrees. I'm also super nervous because meteorologists are now predicting a winter storm in the Northeast.
Thank goodness Ash is the awesomest friend and hurricane rescue center anyone could ever have. And today is her birthday! For your birthday... you get the Clous... and your parents!...um, forever... sitting on your couch. Happy birthday, Ash!