Categorized | Local Perspectives

COMMUNITY VOICE: Wake Up Call From Sandy

Most of us remember a hurricane called Irene in September of 2011 but thirteen months later came Sandy. I remember the weather stations downgrading it to a tropical storm. I went to bed as usual around midnight and nothing out there except of few drops of rain and a slight breeze. Yes, my friends, Sandy let us know that she was no tropical storm the next day. Those that survived Sandy will not only remember this hurricane but will be talking about it for the rest of their lives.

Let’s turn the clock back to the 1940ies . We had blackout England had constant blackouts almost every night because of the air raids. A popular song during WWII was, “When the Lights go on again all over the world.” We had gas rationing, food rationing and we just learned to do without. That lasted for four years.

Many like myself got involved in the Korean War which came in the early fifties. We trained under all kinds of conditions. We learned to wait, be patient, do without. I would rather have a slice of pizza but c-rations can be mighty tastee when you are hungry. Yes my friends, we learned to work as a team.

Let’s jump to the 1970ies because more readers will remember how happy you were when you finally got to the pump? If the attendant said, “I’ll fill it up but cash only,” you might have answered, “Yes, sir and I’ll throw in the wife and kids, too.”

My Mother and Father used to tell me about a furious hurricane called Vagabond. It hit New Jersey in 1903. My Dad lived on Bordentown Avenue in South Amboy. The convenience of electricity hadn’t come along yet so their oil lamp and ice box in the pantry did the job. Sandy hit us hard this year but we are playing in a different ball park.

I’ve been hitting this ball game for a long time, in fact I’ve been in extra innings for a long time.

Sandy hit us real hard but so did WWII and the Vagabond back in 1903, but in 2012 we had all these modern conveniences such as TV, I Phones, Cell Phones, Facebooks, etc. Overall, I think we did a good job but I also saw the Me, Myself and I few. Patience was not one of their virtues.

Yes, my friends, Sandy has put additional knowledge into this old man’s head. I did everything that I could do to help others and I had friends that I didn’t even know I had.

Rudyard Kipling said, “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs. Sandy hit us hard but also taught us a lesson. I believe we will come back and even stronger this time.


Thomas Francis Clark


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