Sunday, August 28, 2011

Eye of a storm

Asawari and I are in the eye of a storm. It is 10.26 pm, about six hours from when Irene is expected to hit Princeton town. Time for evacuation is over, advisory is to stay indoors and away from the glass windows. The New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is on a live press conference, wishing the New Yorkers a safe night. It is not ok to be outside; he is detailing assistance numbers to call, advising recharging the phones and the vehicles to be tanked up with gas. There is a posse of grim faced advisers behind him and the press is asking tough questions.

Earlier today, a note was slipped into our room from under the door, addressed to 'Dear Valued Guest.' The room would not be served on 28th Aug in the hotel's effort to protect their staff safety and a request was made, to be patient and flexible with the dining services, as the occupancy had risen substantially owing to the extreme weather conditions. 

The power just went off for a few seconds and came on again. I think we are on standby mode; the regular exterior and street lights are off but for the lone bright spot under the hotel portico. Just a while ago, we had our tiny torch dug out of the baggage and are quickly charging the computers while the power is available. 

The rain has been drumming us since late noon, a non-stop torrent. The trees sway and rustle wetly, leaves spraying droplets with every gust. There are roiling brooks in the flower beds and the parked cars gleam through their water sheaths. There is an expectant hush inside the cozy dining area where the staff is helping out in their off work clothes, nearly all of them have stayed back overnight, with some calling in their families for ease and safety.

Princeton University has cancelled all events scheduled on Saturday through Sunday, at the least until about 2 pm. We are ready with packed food from Cafe Nicole, a supply of coffee makings and computers hitched on to charging cables. Sitting here in the deafeningly silent night, with just the assertive pitter patter for background sound....there, power outage again.....there is only to wait and watch and sit it out. 

Come on Irene !!!


solitary wanderer said...

Was thinking of you both while watching the Irene drama unfold on CNN. Who needs reality TV....

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Honey Sangha said...

Eva, have been reading your blog. I came across your article "Victor Egan, the man Amrita Shergil married". Years ago in Delhi, Sarayas were clients with the advertising agency I worked at! Little would I have known.

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