Today the sun shone brilliantly in a clear sky, warming the bus and making it comfortable to write. But I am not comfortable. It has been a week now since Sandy battered the Northeast causing untold destruction. Each day as millions continue without power, and many without heat, it seems the world has been turned upside down. This is the kind of devastation you only expect in war, and even then rarely so much all at once.
The question is not will the Northeast recover? Cities, towns and neighborhoods always recover — eventually.
The question is will life ever be the same again? And for many the answer is likely no.
I drove through New Orleans a year and a half ago, more than five years after hurricane Katrina walloped the Big Easy, and was shocked to see how many buildings remained empty and boarded up, and how many neighborhoods remained nonfunctioning.
Now the Big Apple, like the Big Easy, has been pounded and knocked to the canvas; and many, many small towns and communities, like trees in the storm, have been torn up by their roots.
As I write a sparrow flies inside and seems not to notice as I type. He flits from perch to perch before flying out.
I am reminded months before how a damselfly flew inside and stayed the whole of the day. When I reached out to her she landed on my finger.
There is a connection we all have, each to the other, even to sparrows and insects.
To paraphrase the poet, ask not on whom the blows of the hurricane fall. They rain down on all of us.