Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hurricane Sandy, The Twitter Storm


As I write the street where I once lived in Lower Manhattan is under several feet of water. I'm looking at pictures of it right now, cars floating by, on Twitter. Hurricane Sandy has arrived after a day or two's build up, and wreaked havoc along the eastern seaboard , New Jersey, New York, and God knows where else.
I'm in London, Twitter is aflame with pictures, reports and tales of death, stretching from the Caribbean all the way up to Queens.

And rather oddly, I'd rather be there than here. My daughter has recently moved to New York and is caught in the middle of it. She's in Brooklyn, outside the evacuation zones A,B & C. She's unlikely to be in trouble, is with family, but we lost Skype 90 minutes ago and I don't think it's coming back. I've already warned her about using her cell/mobile, to preserve the battery, so she may not call.
Our Skype call had only just started when it went black, coincidentally as one of the power stations blew up, possibly the one that supplied the juice to her internet provider, I'll never know, but since then the tidal surge has arrived and  Manhattan is flooding.

Not all of it, mostly the southern part, parts of which lie under sea level so it was kind of expected. The lights are out too beneath 39th Street - The Empire State is a towering beacon right now - and the subway stations are flooding, which was kind of expected too. A building had it's facade ripped off in Chelsea, a guy died under a tree in Queens, power's out to God knows how many homes and I'm watching all of this on a veritable tsunami of twitter, a surfeit of photos, information, warnings, apologies from CNN for saying the Stock Exchange was flooded when it wasn't and, most oddly of all, tweets from Piers Morgan while he's actually on air.

Mayor Mikey has just made a statement saying the waters might start to recede in a couple of hours but the storm is far from over.

This may not be my last word on the subject.