Fifty-six Hours

That’s how long I was without power at home during and after Hurricane Irene. Not too bad, considering that there are many people here on Long Island, and right here on the East End, who don’t even know when theirs might be restored.

But fifty-six hours was more than enough. At least I could go to work, where we had power the whole time. At home, I was just uncomfortable and stressed and done. This house gets its water from a well, and when there’s no power, there’s no water. After I used what I’d stored, I had to haul it from work in a big container. Knowing that my refrigerator full of food was spoiling made it even more difficult. The peaceful haven I count on my little home to be was no longer peaceful, or a haven.

I had a small epiphany this week. Yes, I’m fortunate to live a life where I can count on electricity, running water, and other comforts. But at the same time, I need to acknowledge that I work very hard to provide those things for myself. It’s up to me. So when I can’t take a shower or flush the toilet, when most of my fresh food becomes inedible, and when I can’t see to do much of anything, it’s distressing. And I can stop apologizing for that, without diminishing the suffering and hardship that people all over the East Coast — and all over the world — are experiencing right now.

While there was a little bit of daylight on Sunday — in between the moments when I thought I might see Miss Gulch pass my window on her bicycle — I finished the giant swatch I started earlier in the week. It’s more of a stitch sampler than a swatch. I worked out the math and the logistics for a shawl with an interesting bit of lace, and played with some lovely lace edges. When my Red Heirloom Tomato yarn arrives from Sundara, I’ll begin figuring out how to make it all work on a larger scale. We shall see what becomes of all this swatching and figuring.

I began a pair of socks on Monday, when Kris told me to start something. He even told me what yarn to use (4-ply Organic Poll Dorset from Renaissance Dyeing) and what pattern to knit (Anne Hanson’s Caterpillar Socks). I needed someone to tell me what to do by that point, so I’m glad he stepped in and gave me a shake.

Now onward, to Labor Day weekend and the reverse migration of the Summer People — those who haven’t given up and gone home already, that is!