life in and around NYC is insane

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sandy, a year later

It was a devastating storm, the worst storm I had ever seen on Long Island.

No electricity for days, gas shortages/lines, no public transportation...

"Refugees" in my office because their work locations were inaccessible.

A second storm, a nor'easter, hitting us before we even had a chance to catch our breath.

for most of us, life eventually returned to normal.

Not for all of us.

Remember J?  She and her sons and their pets took refuge with us in the immediate aftermath of the storm.

Sandy isn't over for her.  And won't be, for a long time.

Her house sits near a canal on the south shore.  She had five feet of water on the first floor.  House was totally uninhabitable.

She stayed with us for about a week, then moved in with a friend for several months.  She thought it would only take a few weeks or perhaps a couple of months to get the repairs done.

In the spring she moved back into her house.  Her uninhabitable house.  they've been living on the second floor of the house, they have electricity and running water but no heat, and they're cooking in the crockpot and microwave because they have no kitchen.

Just the other day she found yet another treasured possession, a photo of her grandmother, covered in mold -- it was still damp when it was wrapped up and placed in storage.

They'll be moving to a temporary home in the next week or so, they can't spend the winter in the house with no heat.

She's still dealing with FEMA and her insurance company and the bank that holds her mortgage.  Then, when the red tape finally disappears,  she has to find a reputable contractor -- the last one she hired was incompetent.

And just the other day her "lovely" neighbors  started all sorts of nasty rumors about why her house isn't fixed yet.

I wish I could say J was unique, but there are so many other people still dealing with this disaster.


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