Reflections on Hurricane Sandy

We are busy digging out here in NYC, as the news footage can well attest.  It was indeed quite a storm, and for a time everything slowed down, including NYC podiatry and even blogging about NYC podiatry.  Now that we are moving forward again, it’s time to put pen to paper, or finger to keyboard, as it were, and glean a few lessons.

Personally, my family and I experienced an extended power outage, but thankfully the damage to the house was minimal.  As public transit was suspended for the first few days after the storm, my NYC podiatry office also closed, and is now just churning back to life.  Those close to us geographically and personally did not fare so well.  The Rockaways featured so prominently in the news footage is close to where I live, and the damage there was extensive.  Many friends lost their entire first floor- including kitchens, furniture, and the irreplaceable items such as pictures and memories.  The power is just coming back on and they are recovering, but it will be a long road.  Meanwhile they are displaced, living in temporary housing, and waiting for contractors, plumbers, electricians, carpeting, and trying to maintain a semblance of normal life.  And this story is being repeated throughout NYC, New Jersey, and other locations.

Fortunately, though, everyone I know is OK, and that is most important.  Yes, there are casualties of this storm, and in the end that is the biggest tragedy.  We will rebuild the houses, and reclaim some of the stuff.  And we will come out stronger with a few lessons.  For me personally, those lessons include never taking the simple act of coming home to a warm, well lit house for granted anymore.  It is indeed nice to be able to walk into a dark room and flip a switch to turn the light on.  And any size or shape house, no matter how simple, is a home, and that’s nice.

And of course, I am blown away by the myriad acts of kindness from strangers to strangers to which I have personally been witness over the past few weeks.  From financial, clothing, and furniture donations, to help with cleaning, food, and insurance processing, we have all come together to help each other out, and maybe that’s the lesson of a tragedy.  This type of event brings out the absolute best in people.

Let’s try not to get back to normal - rather let’s be better than we were, and internalize the spirit of camaraderie, generosity and selflessness from this point forward.  To donate or help, click on the links below.

www.redcross.org

www.jewishfederations.org

www.achiezer.org

Dr. Ernest L. Isaacson

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