I try to keep ahead of things but Hurricane Sandy interrupted my schedule. I live in the part of NYC that lost power and things just got confusing. I had been away, speaking at the Michigan Audiology Consortium conference in Lansing Michigan and arrived back on Friday night. We drove down to our house on Long Beach Island on Saturday to do all we could do to get it ready so that it had limited damage if Sandy took a direct hit on the Island, which was the predicted path. With fingers crossed we came back to NYC and did the same to our apartment. It seemed that we were in pretty good shape in NY except for about one foot of water in the basement of our building. Then, a CON ED transformer exploded and all of lower Manhattan went dark. We had water and our stove worked so we were better than most. No internet, no cell phone services and, of course no lights or hot water. But it just got too cold so we moved to Brooklyn with our kids. They have heat and water, and food and a very good attitude.
Attitudes that help – and don’t
The city has set up stations where you can get water if you live somewhere where there is no water, and Con Ed has set up places where you can charge your computers and phones. I read in the NY Times this morning that one of the Chase banks has let people with no power come in to charge their devices, use the internet and bathrooms. Other facilities (NYU dorms, some banks and hotels) will not let people in to use what they have. Someone needs to teach them about “do unto others…”
What about people with hearing loss?
I keep thinking about the people with hearing loss who are in this difficult situation. How do they know where to go to charge what they need? Without access to the internet how are they finding out what is going on, what to expect, how to get help? Do they have enough batteries to manage to get their technology working? To keep flashlights working? To get to someone if they need help? How will they know when things improve – subways up again etc.?
We all need to be grateful
We need to be grateful for things we have. Family who love us and who can help. We need to check on those around us and help if we can. We need to check on neighbors and do what we can. Thank you all.