Throwback Thursday: Well hello Sandy!

THERE are welcoming committees and there IS a welcoming committee. Mine was arranged by Sandy. It would be the first time I am meeting this no ordinary girl and it will definitely be the last. There are just some welcoming committees that you wouldn’t want to encounter after they made their first impression.

Hello Sandy! Thank you for the welcome, but I am not impressed.

Sorry, I wasn’t impressed by Sandy’s welcome for me when I visited the Big Apple for a second bite. Sure, she brought out a storm of a fanfare all the whistling, a rain shower of transparent confetti, and an engulfing tide of love, which I could honestly say I could do without. A sunny smile and warm hug would have sufficed.
First casualty in sight- a road sign (on the road). That’s how hard she was blowing.

But no, she wanted to keep me indoors…. for three freakin’ days! That’s three days sans power, lights and heating, no TV, no internet, can’t read in the dark, can’t even play on the smart phone so as not to drain the remaining juice in case of emergency. That’s three precious days minus exploring the city that doesn’t sleep. I had cabin fever. Ugh.

Then she threw us into darkness. This was in Jenny pad in Journal Square, Jersey City.
Oh, Sandy, you can’t keep me away from the donut shop…. good thing I was able to grab a box of my craving before Dunkin Donuts closed.
Thank goodness, there was hot water running through the faucet and gas to power up the cooking range. But that was in Jersey. In NYC where I stayed with Nuhma, it was a different story-no power, making it compulsory aerobic exercise going up & down the flights of stairs (picture this: the flat is on the 10th floor), no hot water, it was a boil to bath daily habit making us Pinoys smelling good because we grew up to using the balde and tabo (so who’s laughing now?).
The view of Lower Manhattan from Nuhma’s 10th-floor pad.

Sandy surely paralyzed everyone with her presence. Tunnels were flooded, transportation systems were crippled, people were stranded and cold, the city was losing millions by the day. 

Stopped on its track. The Path out of service for days until the tunnel is drained of water.
So was much of the subway route in NYC.
Surprisingly, Upper Manhattan was spared from the storm’s aftermath. As if nothing happened in that part of the city, tourists milled about by thousands doing what they do best- shopping at the festively glowing shops, while at the other half of the city was thrown in pitch-black darkness at nightfall as if time was on a standstill. It was surreal.
The great divide. In stark contrast– while nothing seemed to have happened in Upper Manhattan, Lower Manhattan was tossed into pitch darkness when night fell. 
Well, at least most of Upper Manhattan…. Central Park, it seemed, was the only establishment that closed. 
The river ran through this–the Con-Ed Substation power plant.
NYC & Jersey City scenes: it can take a day for your turn to gas up.

If there was something positive that came out of this episode, it was the bonding moments I had with friends over candlelight dinners sans any distraction, electronic or not. It gave us enough time to catch up after not seeing each other for the longest time. Sandy, this was your bright side.
David (who looked like Jesus Christ) making bread to feed two hungry humans.
Thanks to the designated chef & savior! 
Meanwhile, I was hosted by a real chef in NYC. Thanks Nuhma!

I always believe everything happens for a reason. Sandy’s slap to Lady Liberty’s domain may be her way of telling me to spend time where it is due. A seemingly tongue-in-cheek statement but believe me every word is true. In fact, I never had so much fun playing with a diva cat for days. Now, what’s the cat’s name again, Jenny? LOL.
Bonding with the cat diva.

Oh, NYC. You’re still my favorite place to visit. Expect me to be back in your arms soon… and keep Sandy and her brood away, please.

For more travel and lifestyle stories, visit http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/ and http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on September 12, 2013.




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