Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Yesterday, I used my time wisely. Because I was fortunate to have a full tank of gasoline, I thought it would be a good idea to head to Motor Vehicle Dept. No one has been on the roads. Gasoline anarchy. A great opportunity to renew my license before it expires over the weekend.
First thing I saw were trucks from Colorado and Tennessee. A good sign. We have more out of state crews up here. Those tree guys from Illinois were still working on the tangled mess of twisted limbs. On the same street where I first spotted them on Saturday. Not such a good sign. That's only ONE street of many.
Three of the four DMV offices were closed. No power. I struck out on my first choice. Plugged in the address of my only option and let my navigation system direct me around traffic. Caused by gas lines. People are "hoarding" gasoline. I just heard the governor got permission for tankers to cross state lines. NY will be getting fuel from Massachusetts, Delaware, Connecticut and I'm not sure where else. All interstate restrictions are being lifted. So much for the proclamation a few days ago that we have plenty of gasoline. I watched a tanker being escorted by a police cruiser. Are they afraid someone may be cooking up a scheme to hijack a fuel truck?
DMV? Everyone had the same idea. Three hours. The best three hours of the week. It was warm, there was electricity and an internet connection. AND, my license has been renewed. AND, mom has some explaining to do. For years, I was told my FIRST name was Anne-Marie. That is how the nuns made me learn to write my name. With the hyphen. My birth certificate tells a completely different story. Marie is my middle name. I don't know what's funnier: the fact that I've had birth certificate out for many things over the years and never realized it OR, the fact that this was picked up by the clerk at the DMV. Score: Anne (ahem) Marie 0 DMV 1.
Heading home, I wanted to stay on the main roads. Despite the fact that many are still without functioning traffic lights, my normal routes are through back roads where most of the trees are down. I chose intersection commotion over swinging wires. Ultimately, the last part of the trip I found myself on the familiar roads. Big mistake. HUGE.
There are still trees leaning on wires. There are still wires blowing in the wind. Poles are snapped and those wires are draped onto the roadway. Presumably dead, treated as though all live. There are miles of road that show no signs of anyone dealing with this and it's a substantial stretch of road with significant damage. Further down that same road, I did see several crews working. It will be days before they make it down that road to the rest of the mess.
It's freezing. Literally. February temperatures the first week in November. Not unprecedented, just highly unusual. The fireplace is roaring and the garage is ice cold. There are plenty of streets where wood from fallen trees is neatly stacked on the side of the road, safely away from any wires.
This begs the question, why am I still on a quest for firewood and the bags of ice?
Postscript: As for power restoration? My best guess...... LIPA, my power company will not be in any great rush to get the job done. The storm coming on Wednesday is being called a "significant weather event" .... The forecasters keep downplaying the whole thing because it pales in comparison to what happened last week. Winds of 55MPH? That's havoc. Someone around here really pissed off Mother Nature. When it rains, apparently, it freakin' pours. This is an annoyance, an inconvenience, and..... FIXABLE. Keeping it all in perspective.
Sending hugs and love to a few people whom I happen to know are having various tests/appointments this week.