No knitting around here for several weeks... and you would think, given the state of things around here (Buffalo, NY) lately (October FREAK snowstorm,) that there would be some knitting going on, but I just can't seem to get it started.
Since early Sept., I've been teaching second grade at a local Jewish day school and absolutely LOVING it. It is challenging, but it is fun, and it is so very rewarding. My hours are part-time, but not the amount of time I have to spend. Constantly, there are plans to write and papers to correct and details to attend to, etc. I'm also still at my two other part-time teaching jobs in the Jewish community. I've barely had a minute to deal with all the other normal aspects of living (like I have three kids, two still at home, and a dog and a husband and food to shop for and laundry to handle and a house to take care of and bills to pay....)
But, what happened the other day, and its aftermath, have been unbelievable. On Thursday, 10/12, the City of Buffalo and some of the suburbs were hit with an unpredeicted snowstorm that dumped two feet of heavy, wet snow. Because the leaves were all still on the trees, they were like huge nets, or hammocks, that held this great, wet weight of snow until they couldn't hold any longer. All though the night on Thursday, amidst snow and thunder and lightning, you could hear what sounded like gunshots. POP! (The initial sound of a tree branch splitting.) Then, a slow crack, as the branch peeled off of its tree. Then, a moment later, the thud of the branch as it landed in the snow. What we woke up to on Friday was unbelievable devastation. Tree branches everywhere. Power out to over 250,000 households. Luckily, no trees fell on our house or on us. Just a few minutes from my house, a man died while shoveling his driveway when a huge tree limb fell on him. Killed him instantly. May his soul forever be blessed.
We spent hours on Friday moving things in our, yes, finished, basement up to higher elevations. The kids' computer and my grandmother's china came upstairs. The rest we thought would be okay if we just moved it up to higher shelves. We knew our sump pump wouldn't work without electricity, and so we figured the carpeting would get waterlogged and would have to go, but we never expected what we found in the basement on Saturday. Four-to-six inches of water and more piling up. My husband and the two teenagers who still live with us full-time (the older one is in college, albeit 5 minutes from our house) helped us form a brigade. At first, we tried hauling out buckets of water. After an hour or so of that, with no appreciable result, we switched to moving things upstairs: financial records, old toys, 2 old t.v.'s, my Passover dishes and cookware, the folding chairs we take to softball games, paper goods that I store in the basement, tennis rackets, bowling balls, my old beading and jewelry-making supplies. Pounds and pounds and pounds of stuff. It is all over the first floor of my house. I realize that everything still left down there is unsalvageable. The furniture, the cupboards, the office. If it isn't ruined by standing in water, it will be ruined by the mold that will quickly form. I'm getting the kids used to the fact that their computer will have to be parked upstairs (maybe in their older sister's room) and that they won't have their "hangout." I have to get used to the fact that I have to deal with getting someone in to remove all the carpeting, and then the furniture and the drywall and completely gut the place. When and whether we re-do anything down there... I have no idea.
So, how the heck am I posting this? Well, my husband had the forethought, when he came home from work on Thursday night and saw how bad it was, to reserve a room for us at the local Hampton Inn, so I'm sitting in the lobby there using their free wireless. We haven't actually stayed overnight here yet, but they have power and a hot breakfast and free wireless (!) and hot showers and cable t.v. We came over yesterday and showered and relaxed and then actually went home to sleep -- with the kids in sleeping bags and quilts on the floor of our bedroom. We can't bring the dog here, so we will have to be back and forth -- in violation of the driving ban in the town, but, it is only a 5-minute drive. But, it is a respite. You would think that I'd pick up some knitting to help while away the hours... maybe later.