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Friday, May 27, 2016
Someone else’s storm
(Page 3 of 3)
Chris Connolly
This is the head I mistook for a nightmare Howdy Doody. It made such an impression that I went out searching the wetlands to find it and figure out what it was.

    When the tide finally turned, I hung out my living room window and watched my town float out to sea. I saw a refrigerator sail by on its back, the door bobbing open and closed. I saw a lot of Halloween decorations sail by. The highlight of this frightening flotilla was what looked like a Howdy Doody head on a hay bale that screamed past and briefly convinced me that I was living in an actual nightmare. The image of that head so vexed me that I searched the wetlands north of my house for an hour to find it (see photo).

    The damage to my house was massive. The middles of my rooms remained mostly dry, but the edges were all soaked — the way a piece of paper would become wet from the edges in if it fell on a puddle. All my systems were ruined: the heat, the electricity, the boiler — and they remain inoperable as I write this. The smell was, and still is, horrific, and I was forced to stand in my bedroom at one point and listen to the flood gurgling inexorably up through the radiators. It was scary and smelly and it made me feel small and helpless.

    Stories are my vocation and my currency. I have borne all manner of hardship to gather stories worth retelling. Sandy, however, is not a tale I’ll be breaking out around a crackling fire years from now; it was too harsh, too much mine.

    It is, inarguably, important to cover stories like this, but I prefer to be the newsman casting light on the event, not the guy shoveling half his life into contractor bags. I understand why I stayed for Sandy, but I also understand why I wouldn’t do it again. I may cover another hurricane someday, but next time it will be someone else’s storm.


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I have visited Point Lookout since I was 15 months old.  My dad spent his summers at my Grandma Ledwith's and Aunt Kit's place since the 1930's. The home is still in the Staudt family. Such loving warm memories of family the ocean and wonderful meals together.  Your account refreshed my vision that  this precious home may be now " Floating Memory".  Though all was fine at the high end of town closer to the church, your experience was felt by so many of my cousins there. 

I hope you recover sooner than later and have support of family and friends. Is there someone in particular there that can use some hands on help? Let me know.

Thursday, November 29, 2012 | Report this

I read this story and it is a incredible way to describe the feeling. I live in Island Park, I also stayed behind thinking to myself well I would rather be here to do all I can to save my belongnings atleast the irreplaceable items. I have never experienced anyhting like this in my life have always seen it on television and it hurts to watch the devastation that others have went through not knowing exactly how they felt until now. It is the most humbleing life altering experience that anyone can go through. Ypu are completely rendered powerless when nature unleashes her fury.

For us we flooded that morning before about 3 feet in the streets, it went back down at low tide, however that evening the lights flickered on and off around 6:45 pm and then were out completely at 6:50 at that moment we grab some last minute items and put them up as high as possible and then the water started rushing in from all corners of the house within 10 minutes the water was up to my knees. My son started crying saying omg we are in trouble. I never feared for my life however my mind started racing " what to do next ? how high is it going to get? where will I lve? " questions that I could not answer. I had 5 feet of water in my house I watched from the 2nd floor as my shoes, my clothes, furniture etc just flowed throught he house in water. The next morning we woke to no more water in the house or streets, and began to clean up the remnants of my life and Sandy. It took 10 days to clean up and with no power for 6 weeks and the loss of my car it was difficlut to complete things once it got dark out. I still to this day do not have heat in my house other than electric baseboards heaters, and the work is not done as far as rebuilding.

Thank You for your incredible story

Friday, April 12, 2013 | Report this
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