Hurricane Sandy has hit New York City like never before. It has wrecked homes, bridges, electricity and many other things that New Yorkers take for granted. I was in the dark for almost 5 days without electricity, Internet, heat and cell phone reception as many other residents in Lower Manhattan.
I felt lost, abandoned and separated from the outside world. I had to walk 25 blocks to get any sort of civilization. I was running low on food and it was getting unbearable to live in our apartment without hot water to shower and cell reception to call anybody. We were lucky not to be directly hit by the flood and surge. However, we still suffered a great sense of lost and confusion as our neighborhood was in complete darkness and the possibility of looting and danger was lurking if the situation dragged on.
Fortunately, we got power back after 5 days in the dark but it has not been so lucky for the others who remain in the dark and have to face the cold and lack of power continuously for the days to come. It is not all bad coming out of the aftermath of hurricane Sandy. Here are some lessons that hurricane Sandy has taught me.
First of all, we can never over-prepare for a disaster. I have enough batteries, candles, flashlights, solar lantern and radio to keep us going and informed. The dried food was also keeping us from starving. Secondly, it is important to have friends. This sounds cliches but without them, we could not stock up on more non-perishables and get hot meals uptown. Finally, it is through this disaster we learned to appreciate more things that we tend to take for granted. The electricity that we have come to get used to, the heat equipped in our apartment and a hot shower that awakens our body and keep us clean.
New York city is still in the process of rebuild as residents and local businesses are coping with loss and trying to stand up on their own feet again. We don’t know when the next disaster might hit us again but I hope we as New Yorkers will be better prepared and the government has a better plan to keep New York safe.
P.S. Here is a link to an AP article, in which I was interviewed for my experience when power came back. http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Cheers-as-power-returns-to-parts-of-downtown-NYC-4003745.php