Hi everybody! If you live on the East Coast, I’m sure you’ve been impacted in some way by the terror that was Hurricane Irene. Interestingly enough, the name Irene comes from the Greek word meaning “Peace.” This hurricane was anything but peaceful.
I really thought that the hurricane was receiving excessive amounts of press and that everything would blow over (no pun intended) by the time it reached New Jersey. To a certain extent, I was right. Yes, the hurricane had an incredibly large span but it was a weak one. It passed through the Northern NJ/NYC area late Saturday night and by Sunday morning, Irene seemingly had little to no affect on my neighborhood. We didn’t lose power or have any flooding. At first.
By around 3:00 PM Sunday afternoon, we suddenly lost power. I was devastated. What would I do without immediate Internet access, television or the ability to charge my cell phone? Things took a turn for the worse when I realized we had a few inches of water in the basement, which never happens since my house is on a hill above the water table. When I found out we may not get power back until September 4, I was furious.
Why did all of this have to happen? How annoying and troublesome that I had to dump out nearly 20 buckets of water from my bedroom (which still has some water under the floor boards) upstairs. I heard the office had limited power and so I decided to drive last night to charge my laptop and cell phone. I realized as I drove around looking for some electrical salvation just how lucky I was.
The entire north side of my town was without power. Surrounding areas of nearby towns were also without any electricity. Houses by the river were completely flooded and scores of people were evacuated after losing priceless, personal belongings. I was complaining about a mere few inches of water while these people had to deal with several feet.
As privileged Americans, even as middle-classed, we take so much for granted. There are countless homeless who’ve never had electricity or computers or televisions at all. These technological advances that have become so entwined with our daily lives, while not necessarily dictating our lives, have a strong hold on what we do and how we do it. We forget that hundreds of years ago, people were living completely fulfilling loves without any unnecessary external influence.
In the wake of Irene, 24 people have already lost their lives as of Monday morning. I lost power. How could I be so distressed when others have lost their loved ones? How could I be so foolish? It’s almost as though I forgot about the last Great Flood and all that God promised. I guess I’m still looking for that rainbow.