The day Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey, started like any other typical Monday.
Log into Facebook. Update Status.
Check text messages.
Get more coffee.
A light rain fell from the skies and it was a little windy. But there didn’t seem to be any cause for concern. In fact, I began to wonder if this storm was nothing more than sensationalized weather reports and hype.
And boy was I wrong.
Luckily I decided to prepare for the worst and took out my checklist.
Carton of cigarettes X
Pick up never ending supply of: Bottled Water, Pop-Tarts, Benadryl X
Charge all computers, cell phones, and electronic devices X
Take out board games: Scrabble, Monopoly, Sorry, Risk X
Finish the laundry to ensure enough pajama options X
Move outdoor items [cushions, decorations, chotskies] to the storage unit X
Tie down remaining outdoor furniture X
Pack emergency get out of town bag X
Upload and schedule blog postings for the remaining three pictures in the 30 Day Photo Challenge X
Try to convince other family members to come here so we can all be trapped together X
Take a really long shower [complete with shaving all body parts and a deep conditioning treatment – and then hot-roll the hell out of my hair] so the clean will last for a few days, in the event of a power outage X
[X = checked off. As if you couldn’t figure that out.]
As the day progressed the rain fell harder and the winds picked up.
But that didn’t stop My Uncle Sol (who’s 94 years old) and my Aunt Bea (who’s 93 years old) from driving to the gym to exercise (in 50 MPH winds). Because when we’re facing uncertain death, it’s really important to be in good shape. Almost as important as hot-rolling your hair.
And it didn’t stop the bird from flying into my garage, and scaring the crap out of me, when it dive-bombed my head.
* And it certainly didn’t stop me from filming my father while he tried to fix our broken garbage disposal.
[*Yes, there is a home movie in progress detailing that glorious event.]
At exactly 4:18pm we heard a horrifying boom.
And just like that – our power was gone.
We had no television, no radio, no Internet, no landlines, no cell phone service, no texts, no emails, no form of communication whatsoever.
There is something very eerie about being completely cut off from the outside world.
As we listened to the wind rip off the siding from the houses, we tried distracting ourselves by reading.
And that was fun.
For about an hour.
Because once the sun went down it was pretty difficult to read anything with lighting like this:
My son and I ditched our books and headed into the kitchen to set up the board games. And since we couldn’t use our phones to make calls, or send texts, or even access the Internet, we still found them slightly useful when providing much needed mood music.
First, we played Sorry to the soundtrack from the movie Almost Famous.
And I lost, badly.
And I lost, badly.
But then we played Connect Four to the White Album, by the Beatles.
And that’s when things got interesting.
Instead of playing one chip at a time like your supposed to. And instead of taking your time to decide on your next move? We took things to a whole new level when we changed the rules, altogether. We gave each other ONE SECOND to drop in TWO CHIPS at the same time, and then the next person had one second to drop in two chips at the same time.
We called it ‘Split-Second-Double-Down-Connect-Four’ and I finally won a game.
Maybe for the 1st time ever.
[*My son also wants his autograph.]
When my 16-year-old had enough of hanging out with his annoying mother, he took one of the lanterns and disappeared into the night.
But the fun didn’t stop there.
Because that’s when my father came into the kitchen wielding this:
Now I am not going to bore you with the details of this game, because anyone who’s ever played Risk, knows this game never fucking ends. And if you’ve never played this game, here’s a useful hint: it never fucking ends.
But I will give you the main highlights.
1. I’ve never played this game before.
2. My father is the most competitive person on the face of the earth.
3. When asking questions, he will NOT provide any answers or suggestions, even if it’s a practice round and nothing counts.
4. My mother and I formed an alliance.
5. We don’t care if that’s against the rules.
6. At some point during the game I morphed into George S. Patton.
And success was all mine, MOFOS!
When the clock struck 2:30am and I only had 9% battery life left on my phone, I climbed into bed, laughing hysterically.
That is, until the next morning….
TO BE CONTINUED.
PS: Now aren’t you glad I decided to break up my Hurricane Sandy saga into separate blog posts? Stay tuned for Part 2 & 3!
PPS: I am finally making progress with NaNoWriMo. Word Count: 9,767. BOOM.
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