A New England Storm

There’s a storm coming, a hurricane to be exact although by the time it hits here it will be a tropical storm,or so they say and in typical New England fashion people are preparing. The grocery stores were packed for the last two days with people buying all the bread and milk – good luck keeping the milk good when you lose electricity; there are no batteries to be found anywhere; and yesterday the football games were being interrupted with weather updates. They say this could be the perfect storm. It is getting stormy out there no doubt, but this is New England and we have storms all the time. No one comes to New England for the weather.

The strange thing about the weather here isn’t actually the weather but rather the way people react to it. They panic. When it rains the highways are at a stand still. When it snows there’s no getting through the side streets. I have lived here my entire life and I just can’t understand it. Bad weather is a common occurrence. It rains a lot here and although it’s not Seattle rain, it’s frequent enough that everyone who lives here should be comfortable driving in it. Turn your windshield wipers on and go. Go a little slower sure, but GO! The same for the snow. It snows here. For 3 to 4 months a year here it snows. It’s just really cold rain. Sure sometimes it’s slick, but driving 14 miles an hour every time it snows isn’t actually the safest way to handle the slick spots. The strangest thing to me is the grocery hoarding. Sure pick up an extra loaf of bread or some cans of soup that you can heat up over a candle, but do you really need over flowing carriages of food? Treat your self to some cold cuts and Doritos, but leave behind the piles of pasta and frozen foods that would just be useless in the worst case storm scenario. Buy some peanut butter and Ritz crackers, leave behind the raw meat and cheeses. The only thing I bought was some apple cider because I like apple cider this time of year. I had to stand in a check out line for 10 minutes to pay for it, but I should survive the storm now because I have apple cider. If worse comes to the very worst, I can probably survive on the food I already have in the cabinets. Sure I’d have to eat Triscuits and cold black bean soup, but I probably won’t stare to death not feel the need to attack my neighbors and ransack their stores of perishable foods.

I will give today’s storm it’s due. They say it is the perfect storm, the colliding of three big storms. The news saws millions could be without electricity for days and worse than that, without cable. How will everyone know what’s going on without access to Facebook? Even the neighbor who hasn’t raked her leaves in years is preparing. She flipped her picnic table upside down on top of those leaves. Terrific, but you might want to put your plastic chairs in basement too. So I do hope that the storm isn’t everything the news is hyping it to be and that people are safe, but this is New England and we have very bad weather often enough that we know how to handle bad weather. So stay inside and eat all that perishable food that you bought yesterday before you lose electricity and it goes bad but ration your Wheat Thins and canned goods.

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