Not sure if you’ve heard but 39th street is the new Mason Dixon line. Power south of 39th and east of 7th ave is out, and from my talks with some guys at ConEd it will likely be 2-3 days until it is restored. Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers without power for days? Unthinkable. This is much worse than Irene. Earlier today I ventured into the no power zone and it was unlike anything I have ever seen, it reminded me of Gotham in Dark Knight Rises. There was not a single working traffic light. There was not a single working shop light. I stumbled across a few bodegas that were open, lit only by natural and candle light; lines more than a dozen people long. It was the only time I have seen New Yorkers not complain about waiting in a line. You know something is different when that is the case. The aura around downtown was almost surreal, but not in a good way. In a directionless, naive and concerned way. For no one I talked to on my travels who lived in the black out zone knew what was going on. They didn’t have power and they didn’t have cell phone service. People were waiting in lines to use payphones, I didn’t even know people knew how to use those anymore. I thought only homeless people used them, but I guess in a way everyone was a bit homeless down there.
The streets and sidewalks were the quietest I have ever seen them. Yes, there were a lot of people walking around, but they were quiet and reserved; cautious. Cars were few and far between. Thousands of New Yorkers have been displaced, whether their homes are ruined from water or they are without power. When I was heading back uptown there were 50 people walking north for every one walking south. Many had duffel bags and suitcases with them. It reminded me of the photos we see of refugees fleeing Syria.
But sadly, New York did not have it the worst. It seems New Jersey did, regards out to all those adversely affected there and everywhere. Luckily, Chris Christie is a boss so I have faith things will get handled properly in the Garden State.
I could go on, but I’m sure you have seen it all in the news. Here in the city it is as bad as they say, I can’t say what it will be like over the next few days but I do know it will be interesting. But alas, New Yorkers still came out in style. Boots, wellies, rain jackets, lots of leggings, a little bit of camo and dogs; lots of them… Thus, I present, hurricane Sandy street style.
Justin L Jeffers
PS – I have noticed a number of my photos have appeared on Tumblr, if you are going to use my photos, I am okay with that. I just ask that you provide proper link backs to FYGblog and if you want, go a step further and let me know, as I wouldn’t mind seeing where my photos end up.