Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hurricane Irene devastates the Albany area

But first, that’s right, folks. We were at LEGOLAND in Carlsbad, California, last weekend. I had a great time (in a “What the eff has my life come to?” sort of way) and I’m working on a funny post that you’re sure to love. But right now there’s something more timely to talk about, and that’s the flooding from Hurricane Irene in upstate New York.

Everyone was worried about what the storm would do to New York City, but the downstate area pretty much got off the hook. Upstate, however, is ravaged, especially around Albany and the Catskills, where one town got over a foot of rain.

For those of you not up on your New York State geography, my hometown of Albany is 150 miles due north of Manhattan on the west bank of the Hudson River, just south of where the Mohawk River meets the Hudson. Some trees were knocked down during the storm last weekend, but the real damage came—and is still coming—from the resulting floods.

This is a popular drive-up restaurant on the banks of the Mohawk River in Scotia, NY, not too far from the company I telecommute for. I ate here several times on my lunch hour when I was back East last summer.

And here’s how it looked yesterday.

Flooding has to be the worst. What a mess.

My family is fine, thank God. My daughter, Courtney, had the closest call. She and her family live in a rural area outside of Albany that was hit very hard because there are several creeks running through there. Her front and back yards were flooded, as was their barn. They evacuated Sunday night, but thankfully, they returned Monday morning to find their house untouched.

Not far from Courtney, a woman was swept to her death by the raging Onesquethaw Creek as she prepared to leave her home to seek shelter at the local elementary school. According to this article, she was last seen leaving her house and “like that, she was gone.”  So sad.

My son and his girlfriend expect to close on a house in that area sometime this week. Fortunately, their place is on higher ground. I guess the good news is, they know it can withstand both a flood and an earthquake. Yep, Albany felt the quake centered in Virginia last week—my company and several other offices even evacuated.

What the hell, huh?

You know, when we hear of these natural disasters, it’s human nature to get a little charged up. The folks are The Weather Channel get positively giddy, don’t they? In a sick way, we’re even a wee bit disappointed when things peter out and the devastation doesn’t quite live up to the hype of the predictions. But man, we tend to forget how serious these events are and how they can change people’s lives, sometimes in a way where they’ll never be the same.

I always say that if you wake up in the morning, can see yourself in the mirror and can take a proper piss and shit… well, right there you have nothing to complain about. It’s already a great day.

I know I have a lot of readers who’ve been affected by not only this storm, but by those crazy tornadoes early this summer. My heart goes out to all of you. Stay safe.


Anonymous said...

I am so happy that your family is safe. It is such a tragedy. I hope all areas affected can bounce back and recover. Thoughts and prayers to those impacted and to those who lost a loved one.

Tender Heart Bear said...

I am really happy that your family is alright after that. I do feel really bad for the people that lost everything they have worked for. I have family in Virgina I haven't heard from yet. But I am praying they are alright.

I agree with you about the people on the weather channel too.

Mimi said...

I'm shocked at your flooding pictures at the restaurant. Flooding is terrible, it brings so much dirt and yuck that's really hard to get rid of.
And I like your take on a great day, it is true. Nothing to complain about.
Glad your family is ok.

Sous-Chef said...

Good to know those immediate to you and yours are OK. A cosmic hug to those affected. I went through the same thing earlier this summer with my MT peeps.

Anonymous said...

Thank goodness your family was safe. I hadn't seen any pictures of news since right before Irene hit. I was already freaking out when I saw its path, that was enough for me. Worrying is what I do best but, that was way too much for me to handle.

It's unfortunate that restaurant is underwater. Terrifying is an understatement. Like I told all my friends right before Irene hit, "It's better to be safe than sorry." Something I am sure some people wish they had been after losing their homes and some their lives.