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October 30, 2012


I'm glad the storm largely bypassed Montreal, yet gave you such lovely scenes, Beth. I hope your loved ones south of you are okay.

No storms out here in the west, just lots of rain. Far north of us along the Pacific there was an earthquake (7.7) on Saturday evening, followed by some after shocks, then another 6.2 quake yesterday. Some had felt them in Vancouver but we did not. No serious damage thankfully. I kept thinking how strange that both coasts had such powerful events, as if the gods were angry.

Yes, it's strange. We had an earthquake in Montreal recently, too -- not big enough to wake me up! And thanks for asking about my family -- my dad, in central New York, said there was lots of rain and wind, but they didn't lose power and it was over quickly. And so far as I know, everyone in central Vermont and New Hampshire was OK too, as well as Jonathan's brother and sister-in-law near Philadelphia.

The closest I got to the storm was my leapfrogging Florida Absentee Ballot which I sent express (courier) via UPS in a panic Monday noon fearing postal disruptions. It left Mirabel around midnight, arrived in Jacksonville Fl via Louisville early Tuesday and was delivered in Gainesville at noon.

What atmospheric photos - you can tell there's been something!

Out here in Postville, on the most delicate tendril of the electric grid, the power stayed on. My golfing friends said they had played golf in worse winds. I don't think we've received a half inch of rain from the storm, though it is still lingering to the west and skies are cloudy. Very happy to have dodged the bullet, and gratified to see much mention of climate change during the aftermath coverage, particularly a Con-Ed spokesman admitting they were dealing with "100 year events" annually, and WeatherChannel meteorologists explaining the atmospheric reasons for this. Very ugly along the coast, near 14 foot storm surge into NYC broke 1817 record by over 2 feet. Hello water.

Strange times. We are trying to get in touch with friends in New Jersey. So far no luck. The size of this storm is beyond imagining.
Great pix. Loved the cat, also. Look like my grandkids' long-haired black cat.

Here on Long Island, we had quite a ride. We live on top of the moraine along the north shore, so flooding wasn't an issue for us, and we had very little rain. But sustained high winds from Mon noon until well after midnight Tues morning brought down lots of trees and large limbs. We watched nervously out bedroom windows as still-leafy oaks, hickories, sassafras and maples twisted and shuddered in the wind, illuminated through surprisingly thin clouds by a full moon. Power went out around noon Monday for us, along with about 85% of all Long Island households. Luckily none of the downed trees on our property damaged anything. I had a nice Halloween surprise last night when our lights came back on, despite warnings that we should expect a week or two before they could get around to everyone. Thursday morning's news says still well over 50% here without power; I even passed a traffic light still unpowered on my way to work this morning. Heavy flooding along both Long Island Sound and south shore towns, though nothing like NYC. There is a new breach across Fire Island, east of Smith Point, I understand, though haven't seen any images yet. For us, anyway, life is returning to normal, with the opportunity to lay in another couple of year's worth of firewood without needing to travel, and we will relish the quiet of night-time without the drone of neighbors' generators. Still no phone or internet at home, and cell phones service is badly diminished, so it was a day or so before I could get word out that we were fine. Hope your friends in NJ are similarly fine, but only out of touch, Hattie.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.