Kindness was everywhere. A few NYU professors who are regulars at the studio took in loads of kids who needed to charge their phones and shower and rest somewhere warm. We ran into Eli and Nico (pictured on the right), friends and Strala regulars in SOHO, picking up milk and eggs on the street corner, where a local vendor decided to set up a table and give away what would already go bad without refrigeration.
There was a Strala pop-up in Brooklyn courtesy of Strala leader Suzy, where along with Vera, Deb and others she provided some stress relief for the fully-powered but stir-crazy side of the Sandy experience.
People wanted to be together, not alone. Sandy shocked people out of their routines. Things became simpler at the same time as more critical. We were just hanging out and helping each other.
Friday night around 6pm the power came back at Strala. We heard the news while at Colleen and Jason's, and biked over to the building to make sure it wasn't a rumor. Lots of business owners were at the building for the first time, excited, and hoping their equipment was OK.
We got back in, and everything worked. Home was our next stop, and everything here was still dark. The power line ran across Broadway. East of Broadway was lit up. West was pitch black. I didn't care about power at home. I was so excited we could begin returning to normal at Strala. At 4:30am the lamp by my bedside turned on. Sandy's way of saying, "remember me."
We were extremely lucky. Sandy has left me with a few gentle reminders about appreciation, the importance of friends, and community. Sandy has taken lives and homes in an instant, destroyed businesses, and left a lot of work to do.
Please continue to extend a hand, and help those you can.
Here are 10 Lessons from Sandy:
1. Be happy for the power you have and patient for the power you don't.
2. If you have power you should help someone who doesn't.
3. Be happy accepting warm socks as holiday presents over the years. You'll need them in an outage.
4. You don't need ConEd to turn on the power of love :)
5. Buy canned goods and tp gradually over time so you dont' become a scary, last minute hoarder.
6. Appreciate what you have. Realize what you have is temporary. Be here now.
7. Keep good friends who wouldn't be too annoyed letting you shower and charge your iPhone in a power outage.
8. Practice non attachement to your stuff, the lights, your routine, etc. Makes you much more flexible in an outage.
9. Practice cooking with a head lamp on. You will need this skill in an outage.
10. 8pm is a perfectly reasonable bed time!