a theatre, film & pop culture review
Two weeks ago today, I was evacuated from The Rockaways due to Hurricane Sandy.
For the first four days, I holed up in Harlem with my friend Andrea and we boozed and watched (terrible) horror movies and copious amounts of Parks and Rec together. From where we were, Sandy didn’t seem so bad. Sure, the wind was a bit intense, but we never lost power, and when we walked around the neighborhood the next day, nothing seemed to be out of place.
Harlem was lucky.
As the MTA tried to get itself together — first with limited buses running, and then a mixture of buses, very limited trains and shuttle buses — I relieved Andrea of hostess duties and moved myself and my things to the Upper West Side. Staying with my friend Jason at his studio, I went back to work and we mostly enjoyed opposite schedules (but we did manage to bond over a certain WB show each night, which was delightful).
Over the course of the past week, I’ve gone back to The Rockaways twice: to gather some more clothes, to vote for our President. The devastation of my little area of Queens is unimaginable. The boardwalk — the second longest in the country after Atlantic City’s (another area sadly torn apart by Sandy) — is gone. It’s in chunks and pieces, and some folks have parts of it in their front yards, blocks from the beach. In Breezy Point, more than 50 homes burned to the ground, and in Belle Harbor, homes were flooded and ruined furniture, trash, totaled cars, and even boats line the streets.
It looks like a war zone.
Power is coming back to the area, slowly but surely, and volunteer efforts have been great, with New Yorkers rallying for their favorite beach and all those whose lives have been turned upside-down by this natural disaster.
Today, I get to go home.
In the past two weeks, I’ve been shown a tremendous amount of love and support. In the first few days, my phone was constantly vibrating with incoming calls, texts and Facebook messages inquiring about me and my home. Dozens of friends and co-workers have offered me a place to stay while I waited out Sandy’s aftermath — and each one of those people? Well, they all work in the theatre. It’s a truly giving community.
I am extremely thankful for Andrea and Jason for opening up their homes to me. They are amazing people (and gifted theatre folk!), and I’m grateful for their friendship.
For more info about 20 Days of Thanks, go here.