Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Apres Le Deluge, Moi

After 2 days of cabin fever, and after the wind gusts started to die down, I took a walk outside to see what I could see, and I took my trusty little digital camera.

From my end, there wasn't much to see.  I decided to walk to my Lower East Side studio, officially to make sure the building was alright, but really just for the walk.

The neighborhood is a little frazzled around the edges, but not really much damage around here.  There's lots of leaf and branch litter on the sidewalks and streets, but not much in the way of big tree limbs or downed trees.  In our neighborhood, it looks like the aftermath of a bad thunderstorm.

This was the worst damage that I saw:

A downed field light pole in McCarren Park.

And of course there were lots of people taking pictures, like me.

 The thing must have come down with a loud crash.

I was happy to discover that the pedestrian path on the Williamsburg Bridge was wide open

A couple on the Williamsburg Bridge looks across the East River into lightless Lower Manhattan.

A lot of other people had the same idea.  I've never seen the Bridge so crowded.  Some of them were joggers, some were on their way to and from work, most were tourists like me heading over to sight-see.

Powerless Lower Manhattan; even the new World Trade Center is completely dark.

The East River looking toward the Manhattan Bridge with the Brooklyn Bridge behind it.  To the right is the darkened Financial District.  We'll find out if they can indeed open up the NYSE tomorrow after the trading floor was under 4 feet of sea water last night.

Here is the 14th Street Power Station from the Williamsburg Bridge.  This is the one that had the explosion last night.

The pedestrian path on the Williamsburg Bridge was packed with people...

While the subway tracks on the Bridge were conspicuously empty.  The J and M trains cross the Bridge on this track.

MTA workers were walking the tracks and inspecting them.  I suspect that most of the real damage is in the tunnel at the other end of the Bridge.  We'll all find out over the next few days how much we depend on the subway system.

Looking into Manhattan from the Bridge.  The only lights are car lights.

Lower Manhattan today brought back memories of the 2002 Blackout for me; stop lights that don't work, drivers who breeze through them when they're supposed to stop, closed up businesses, and darkened tenements.

Controlling the onrushing traffic from off the Williamsburg Bridge was one very brave cop.

Happy Wok! was the only business open on Delancey Street that I saw.  I usually stop here for a fried rice feast when I work in my studio.  There was not a light on in the place, and yet they were open.  They sold fried rice and soup from buffet trays warmed with sterno lamps. 

It seems to me that we've had perhaps a little too much practice at this life-goes-on-in-the-face-of-catastrophe kind of thing over the last 10 years or so.

I was relieved to find my studio building securely closed and locked.  I was having nightmares of a wide open building in a darkened neighborhood with no lights or power.

Well, it's not much of post-apocalyptic spectacle, but then I'm so grateful that nowhere I have to go looks like Breezy Point in the Rockaways today.


IT said...

So, the guy who said (erroneously) that the NYSE was flooded turns out to be a hedge-fund analyst and the campaign manager of Christopher R. Wight, this year’s Republican candidate for the U.S. House from New York’s 12th congressional district.

What , he likes telling lies ffor some sick thrill? OBVIOUSLY a republican.


JCF said...

So glad your studio's safe, Doug. (And that things aren't any worse than they are. Of course, those w/o power may not be able to read this...esp if their phone/pad batteries have given out!)

Counterlight said...

I'm fine, but there are still millions without power and thousands stranded in flooded homes, especially in New Jersey.