Monday, August 29, 2011

Behold the Hurricane

It’s such a shame. I heard the wind say this morning.
Be still my heart. I age by years at the mention of your name

For more than just a moment this weekend, it was 1999 all over again. Mercifully for the Missus and me, while this weekend woke up the echoes of a weekend a dozen Septembers ago, we were spectators to the carnage. Back in '99, we were active participants in the insanity.

I have lived 'NTSG for close to two decades. Until yesterday morning, I had been under the impression that our little town has a dry side and a "flood" side. I learned from driving and walking around town with Margaret yesterday morning just how wrong I have been all these years. As we drove down 28 towards Dunellen, we were only able to make it as far as Mountain Avenue:

A million years ago (OK, it was only eleven) we lived on that side of town. The water over there did not surprise me. However I was surprised by the level of encroachment the storm's waters made up Route 28 on the Bound Brook side of town. One of the things that Hurricane Floyd was supposed to have brought about was better flood control. I did not venture as far as Bound Brook so I do not know whether Irene did a number on Bound Brook similar to that which Floyd did. But walking around the streets of my little town, it was hard to see where the flood "control" manifested itself:

As it turns out, we are lucky enough to live on what amounts to an island in the center of town. No water made it as far as our corner. Ditto for Joe's house and Frank's and Carolyn's and Gidg's. All of us are among the lucky ones. Many of our neighbors - too many of them in fact - were not. A dozen years after Floyd, Mother Nature delivered another tough lesson.

Here's to hoping that those in the know learned more from this lesson than they appeared not to learn from Floyd. There are too many folks in my little town who can not afford a third.


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