Gretchen Rubin

On Awaiting the Arrival of Hurricane Sandy.

On Awaiting the Arrival of Hurricane Sandy.

I live in New York City, and we're waiting for Hurricane Sandy to hit. The wind and rain will get bad today, and the storm surge--that's the real threat to the city--will be at its highest tonight.

Usually I dismiss dire weather warnings (especially a hurricane with the mild-mannered name of "Sandy"--really?), but when I heard that the mass transit system was shutting down, I started paying attention. In New York, everything depends on mass transit.

Now, we wait.

I've used the phrase "the calm before the storm" in conversation before, but I never really thought about its meaning. Now I get it. There's no rain now, and just a breeze, yet the city is preternaturally quiet for a Monday morning.

One characteristic of human nature is that we often don't appreciate what we have until it's gone. Loss, or threat of loss, makes us aware of everything we've taken for granted.

I've been feeling so grateful for electricity, running water, New York City, the subway system, my apartment building, my neighbors, grocery stores, my intact windows and roof--for my beloved ordinary day, and I'll try to hang on to that gratitude long after the storm has passed.

Have you ever lived through a hurricane, earthquake, or the like?

Just in the time that I've been writing this post, the rain has started.

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