Monday, August 29, 2011

The best source of news during and in the wake of Irene has not been television, radio or newspapers, but facebook - people with smartphones and cameras making posts. This morning I surveyed the damage in my yard, which is minimal. A tree branch came down from across the street, and missed my garden fence by inches. A couple of cucumber vines didn't survive, but the zinnias are fine! The container impatiens and coleus even needed to be watered today! Are you kidding me, plants? Our television cable is out, but other services all work. I think the branch that came down may be the culprit that took out the cable, but I am not sure since the wire is still connected. I hear campus is OK too, although classes were delayed for a few hours. One student has emailed me, saying she can't get back from Florida until Sunday, earliest. This afternoon I took a stroll down to the Hudson to see what was up with the river.

 The Hudson River at Castleton, 2 pm today
 I saw no evidence of flooding on Main Street (although I did hear some pumps running, so I assume basements have flooded), but we do have a boil water advisory in the village
 This is unrelated to Irene, but I love these signs the village painted last week - this one is in the road right in front of my house
This is Watson Hollow Road in West Shokan, taken by my sister. The Bushkill took the road and the power lines.

The Hedley building in Troy, taken by Bob this morning.

I understand (from others, as my cable is out) that the national media is saying the storm wasn't that bad and are suggesting that the evacuations, etc. were an overreaction. I predicted yesterday when I briefly saw coverage that this was the pre-planned set-up: hysteria over the hurricane, followed by finger pointing that the government reaction was inappropriate. I can't speak for downstate (and actually there is little word from friends and in-laws on Long Island, I assume the power is out), or the coastal areas in the south, but many  parts of upstate New York and Vermont got hammered and the dismissive attitude is offensive.

One more rant: The political leadership in the town of Olive needs to get its act together, or retire and step out of the way. I used to consider the lack of cell service in Samsonville an irritating inconvenience, but today I consider it an outrage. Of course my parents are fine...but that they have no way to communicate with the outside world is unacceptable.

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