Like millions of other people in the NYC area, Elaine (my wife) and I
spent most of last week in the cold dark, without light or heat. We did have cold running water, and the toilets flushed, so we were
luckier than many.
We live downtown, and by Wednesday we learned that there were pockets of power up by 26th and 6th. So, to get out of the apartment, we'd trek up each evening about twenty blocks in the dark to find a restaurant.
The journey from our apartment to the land of light was other-worldly. It brought to mind images I've encountered over the years about the afterlife. You might think the pitch black streets would be empty, but they were loaded with other pilgrims scrounging around like us for food, warmth and whatever household supplies they were lucky enough to discover in the rare store that was open.
Many of us carried flashlights in our hands to guide our way; some wore
them on their foreheads like miners. Others strolled without light at
all, as if they had night vision.
Walking these streets made you feel like you were part of an army of shadows -- one of the shades of the classical underworld. And the military reference is more than just an analogy. As we strolled back and forth to our destination, we'd periodically notice the men and women of the National Guard walking along side us in camouflage attire, gently laughing and joking into the night.
Continue reading over at Jerome's blog espresso bongo . . .