Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Tuesday Morning -

The power went out for about a half an hour last night and we thought that was it for two days, but it went on 1/2 hour later.  The COG stayed up late, worried about the sump pump, but around midnight the wind died down considerably and he came to bed.  We know from all the flashing clocks in the house that the power went off again in the night for about an hour and a half, but that's it.

There is some significant damage locally - lots of trees down, houses damaged.  Some houses right on the coast were really pounded.  We heard that there were 8 foot storm surges on Plum Island, which is a fragile spit of sand with too many houses and a national wildlife refuge on it.  Power is still out for nearly 300,000 people in Massachusetts.

In March 2010, the North Shore actually had a much worse storm for the local area.  During that very localized  freak storm the winds in our town clocked at 91 mph. Unlike this storm, there was no advance warning.  Thousands of trees went down in the area. You couldn't drive anywhere because of trees across the road.  We were at the airport when it began and the trip home, which normally takes under an hour, took 4 1/2 hours because we kept having to change course, trying to find roads that were navigable. The whole area - 200,000 people, including us, was without power for 2 to 3 days. Oddly, one of the worst things about that was we couldn't get any news. The Boston radio stations and the paper barely carried it because it was so localized. Phones were out. Cell phone towers were out. And no internet because of no power,  so we felt really out of contact as we changed stations on the car radio trying to find out anything at all.  Such a different experience to this one.

This storm's over, though.  It's supposed to be 70 degrees today and rainy. I'm hoping to go wave watching.  Those ancestors I was thinking about earlier in the week would have thought it was just a big rain storm, and got on with things.

Of course, the people in Southern New England and New York have been hit much harder. It's amazing and terrible to see the damage in New York City. They are saying it's one of the biggest storms in history.  The COG just read me something saying that 78% of people in the nation were affected by this storm in some way.  Which tells you something about population distribution.

And  I'm feeling so sad about the crew of the HMS Bounty, and the ship itself.  They picked up one of the two missing crew members who had been swept away during the helicopter rescue. She has since died.  The 60ish Captain is still missing and they are still searching for him. I don't suppose there's much hope for him, even in the latest hi-tech cold water survival suit.  Really tragic.  Ships are safer at sea than on land, usually.  On land, they get bounced around and hit things and their masts invariable break etc.  At sea, all they need to do is bob like a cork and point into the waves and they are pretty safe.  But once the diesel engine went, and the ship started to take on water, with no power for the bilge pump, they had to abandon ship.

The HMS Bounty underwater yesterday.

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