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9441Re: [probe_control] you people over the pond OK??

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  • Mary Giangregorio
    Nov 2, 2012

      Normally, losing all utilities (except water) normally doesn't bother me. When Hurricane Isabel came through here in September 2003 she took out power for our neighborhood for almost three weeks. My ship rode her skirt tails home and we moored the day after the storm so I got to enjoy those three weeks of living with oil lamps, cooking on the grill, and reading if the wife and I weren't having a conversation. That neighbor of ours with the generator let us plug into his outside outlet so we could run a cord to the fridge and that was all the power we used. Everything else was daylight, candles, or oil lamps. And Isabel was just a Tropical Storm when she hit us. Our area is overdue for a major hurricane direct hit; people living here for like 90 years have said in interviews that we usually get one every ten years or so, and so far I've been in the area since 1989, and no major (Cat 3 or higher) storms have made landfall here, so it's only a matter of time of those aged and wise locals are right.

      This time, however, our loss of utilities was a gross inconvenience because we are dealing with a university in Bath. My land phone line is the only one that can call internationally, and e-mail was necessary for quick documentation transfer. (The Evil One has been accepted to the Study Abroad Program; she heads for Bath, England, in January and the deadline for most everything was 1st November. Things on our end were moving so slowly because when anyone transfers funds over $3k US overseas - even to an educational institution - it sets off all sorts of alarms and red flags with our Dept. of Homeland Security; they hold things up for all sorts of checks and additional paperwork - yes, REAL PAPER! - so funds transfer takes twice as long as it used to. We were working out those delay matters with the university in Bath when we lost our ability to communicate overseas. If not for that, then I could have easily gone another three weeks with my oil lamps.)

      As for the rebuilding over here, we'll have to see what happens. Some people living on the barrier islands along the coast, when interviewed after past storms, have said they were relocating further inland. (They are called "barrier" islands for a reason.) Others said they were going to rebuild their multimillion-dollar homes on that same piece of sand that had been washed away once the government - local, state, and federal - brought in sand to replace what had washed away. They call that "Beach/Shoreline Replenishment". They act like it was nothing because their insurance will pay for rebuilding, and the taxpayers will foot the bill to put the sand back so they just shrug it off. Those are the ones I have no sympathy for. Some people who didn't lost their houses in past storms had also said they were moving further inland - off of the barrier islands - because those locations are extremely dangerous when storms hit, especially around Cape Hatteras (the hurricane magnet).

      Coney Island isn't a barrier island. It's been through this sort of thing before and rebuilt, but the Cyclone coaster was never destroyed before. I'm still wondering what they'll do now. As for the New Jersey coastline, well, any coastline, even one with no barrier islands, will fall prey to a slow-moving, wide-area storm. You can't just move the coastline even though Mother Nature can. But people are resilient. Just look at the 1906 San Francisco earthquake; it destroyed the city, yet they built it back up again better than before. The 1989 quake was also a huge one, and Frisco rebuilt after that as well; even other areas in California were devastated by that quake and they rebuilt. Resilient? Stubborn? Refusing to give up? That's us! (Or should it be, that's US?) ;)


      On Nov 2, 2012, at 6:58 AM, Geoff Willmetts wrote:

      > Hello
      > Dino
      > I think loosing local utilities is a sharp
      > reminder on how reliant we are on them.
      > From this side of the pond, it�s the size
      > of the hurricane that shakes more and surprised there weren�t more casualties.
      > One can only hope with re-building that
      > your folk take note of what the Japanese did with earthquakes and improve
      > buildings to survive such a battering. Granted, they haven�t out in the wilder
      > states, but certainly they should in the cities.
      > Geoff

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