Faye Rapoport DesPres

Waiting for the Hurricane

A year ago, after my husband and I took a trip to Bermuda, I wrote an essay titled, “Waiting for the Hurricane.” The island was under a hurricane watch during most of our stay. That essay hasn’t been published (yet?) but here I am, exactly a year later, waiting for another hurricane. This time we’re at home, in the Boston area, while Hurricane Irene pummels North Carolina on her way north to New York City and New England.

I have so many friends in the path of this hurricane; I just received a text from a friend near Raleigh – Durham. She said, in one of her characteristic understatements, “things are a tad breezy here.” Another friend is at her desk at the New York Times, hunkering down in the city. Before heading into Manhattan from Long Island today, she packed a bag with clothes for three days.

A group of writers whom I’ve never met, but who communicate on Twitter at the #WritersCoffeeBar, are staying in touch so far through the storm. They are packing emergency kits for themselves and their pets, and comparing notes about wind speeds and rain.

A strange mixture of adrenaline, expectation, curiosity about the unknown, and the desire to help seems to inspire us to reach out at times like this.

Stay safe, everyone.

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