Three weeks ago, my friend and I though it would be a fun idea to go wine tasting in North Fork at the east end of Long Island. There is a large cluster of wineries there, and it seemed like a lovely end-of-summer activity to drive or bike around them. We planned far in advance, knowing the difficulty of working around the plans of other New Yorkers, and even convinced five other people to go with us. Alas, I am not currently swirling wine to aerate it in an austere tasting room at this moment because instead I am sitting in my apartment on hurricane watch.
Up until yesterday, I was still naively convinced that this trip would be doable as, until yesterday, there was only a 30% chance of rain today. However, now it's an 80% chance of rain, and they've also closed all public transit, so I'm essentially stuck in Astoria (not that I would ever say that on my blog as a negative thing!) until Monday morning. Luckily, assuming the power doesn't go out, I can spend this time on a sort of writer's retreat. I have a book due in a couple of weeks that is ironically on the subject of rising oceans due to climate change. The entire introductory chapter was about New York City's precarious position in the event of a storm surge. I submitted this introduction to my editor two weeks ago as a sample chapter with the note: "Too apocalyptic for 5th grade? Let me know, and I'll tone that down a bit." He told me he'd get me feedback this week, so we'll see how that goes.
I went to the store last night and was not surprised to find it mobbed. Flashlights were out, but I got a few candles. Today, I realized a few items I forgot at the grocery store, but I was scared to go back. Luckily, there is a small organic grocery store between the two larger supermarkets. There was barely anyone in there as apparently, hurricane or not, people are not willing to pay twice as much for organic canned ravioli. At least not in my neighborhood. A friend who lives in Brooklyn said there are no gallons of water left in her neighborhood so she became the "caricature of a New Yorker, walking out of the store with 2 big bottles of Evian under my arms."
Dinah's contribution to the storm preparedness effort.
Being from Houston, I'm inclined to feel this will probably just blow over with a bunch of rain and wind and not too much else. Nevertheless, it never hurts to be prepared! Especially when this means buying canned junk food in the name of preparedness. Another item on the hurricane survival list: red wine. It's one of those things that tastes just fine at room temperature. I might not be in a vineyard in North Fork, but hurricane Irene can stop me from enjoying Long Island's finest.