Hurricane Gloria


The talk about hurricane Joaquin has me reminiscing about a hurricane that hit my home town. In 1985 hurricane Gloria hit Long Island where I lived. Long Island was a pretty messed up place after it left. You might call it a harrowing experience—living through a hurricane. I'll tell you what I can remember and let you decide for yourself.

The radio was our main source of information before the event since we did not have a television. The radio had hurricane watches, hurricane warnings, and emergency interruptions saying that this was not a test, and predictions of seven-foot-high waves to come up from the nearby shore. Our neighbor across the street joked he was going to stay at home and fish out of his second story window. A state of emergency was declared. Soon officials in bright yellow raincoats and hats came around asking us to leave the area.

With some of our neighbors we went to our friend's house. During the storm the front window of the house we were in shattered. Next I remember it was very calm during the eye of the storm. Only the leaves on the trees moved.

Coming back home was a chore. Huge old trees that had shaded the street for years were down. Another street had a telephone pole blocking it. Finally we parked the van and walked home.

For about a week after the hurricane had passed, the power was out, as well as the telephone. We used candles for light. It's hard to read by candle light, but my brother tried anyway. After a while everything was cleaned up. It was fun playing among the downed trees.