When we bought our house some thirty-eight years ago, the entire block was filled with large oak and maple trees. Over the past three-plus decades, almost all of them have come down, some by choice and some by the hand of Mother Nature. Last year, one of the two in front of our next door neighbors' house came down in Hurricane Irene and they opted to take out the one next to it.
That left only the two maples in front of our house. But, as soon as clean-up crews get to it, they will be gone as well. One of them blew over in the storm, taking out the telephone pole across the street along with our power lines. The top portion of the other one snapped off and landed on the neighbors' lawn across the street; I had at first thought that what was there was from the tree that had fallen, but later saw what it actually was.
We'll miss the shade the trees brought on hot summer afternoons, but not raking up all the leaves in the fall, nor the roots that clog the sewer line. And our street, which was once tree-lined, will be that no longer.
Other than the trees and power outage, our damage was relatively minimal. Sections of the fence in our yard came down, the wind so strong that it snapped some of the posts like toothpicks and in other spots blew the slats right off.
Still to be assessed is just what happened to the solar panels on the roof. From ground level, it looks like they have been curled up by the wind, but it will take someone more knowledgeable than I to determine whether they need to be fixed or replaced. Since the pool is closed for the season, their import is minimal till next spring's First Dunk. Any other damage to the roof, of course, would be far more important.
Thanks to our neighbors, the Capones, who made room in their freezer, we will not have to lose all of the meat, vegetables, and sauce made from our home-grown tomatoes that would have fallen victim to the power outage.
Thanks to our friend Gudrun, who has invited us to use her shower, we will not be "those smelly folks." (Though I will have to remember to bring a razor there next time, as I am starting to look a bit scruffy.)
The current estimate is that more than 850,000 LIPA (Long Island Power Authority) customers are without power, upwards of 80% of their total users. It is amazing/ annoying/ distressing to listen to people calling in to the radio stations complaining because they haven't had their power restored yet. ("What are these guys doing? Why isn't my power back on yet?")
Yes, we'd all like to be first on the list and I'm sure many folks would try to make a case for why their power is more vital than anyone else's. But we're all in this together and, as soon as humanly possible, we'll all get through it.
Instead of complaining that they're not working as quickly as you would like, be thankful that there is somebody there to fix it.