It’s been a couple of weeks since I updated the blog – sorry about that. The Palatial Horvath Estate, although not on the coast, was in the direct path of Hurricane Sandy. I lost power on Monday night October 29th, and didn’t get it back until Friday night, November 2nd. The Horvath Family Manse, and my elderly mother, lost power on Monday and got it back on Saturday.

We were two of the lucky ones. Many people in the area lost power for significantly longer. Some of them had just gotten it back when they lost it again after the storm on November 7th that slapped the coast with snow.

You never think too much about electricity until you don’t have it for a significant amount of time. My mother and I both have public water, so at least we didn’t have to worry about flushing the toilet, but most other things were dead – including traffic lights and gas stations in our towns.

The Wal-Mart down the street from me never lost power. I find that amusing.

First there was the rain and the wind and the fury. Then it calmed and, with the electricity off, everything was quiet (well, quiet until my neighbor bought a generator and started it up). It was cold – cold enough that I could see my breath in the morning. It was dark. I find that without electricity I immediately switch to more natural sleep patterns – meaning I go to sleep when it’s dark and get up when it’s light. I got more sleep during the time the electric was off than I have in months. Maybe not since the electricity went off for five days last October 29th.

There was a stillness to those powerless days. It was almost an enforced hibernation. A yanking back from the insanity of modern life. Political rants on Facebook did not matter – I couldn’t access the internet until Thursday anyway. Competing ideologies did not matter. Nothing mattered except making sure my friends and loved ones were all right, staying warm, and finding something to eat. The true basics of life.

And what is the aftermath of this impressive storm? The Palatial Horvath Estate and the Horvath Family Manse did not suffer any damage, but many others did. Some people were injured in the storm itself, or in the cleanup.

But for all of us, this can be a time of new beginning. Sandy forced us back to the very basics of life – life stripped of our modern conveniences. Then the modern conveniences came back.

What we do now is up to us.


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