Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Let There Be Light

On Saturday afternoon (5 long days after Sandy hit) most of my close family members had power back. With no cable/internt, and a ration on gasoline, cabin fever was really hitting hard.  But at least we had electricity.

My cousin and I decided we needed to get out of our respective houses before going crazy.  And so the question arose: What does one do on a Saturday during a state of emergency? Our original plan to go to Loverboy's football game was destroyed in Sandy's path (his University is located along the Jersey Shore ... alas, game canceled.) Well, with our power back and a determination to "get out" we did what any logical person would do.  We drove to another cousin's house to start a bon fire.  

Yes, we left the warmth of our homes to go sit outside on a frigid November evening in front of a wood-burning fire.  The luxury of heat we hoped and prayed to gain for five long days was forgotten as we set up our s'mores and spiked ciders around the fire.  And I wouldn't trade that night with my family for any amount of the electricity we missed the week before.  

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Life After Sandy

We are all aware of the devastation brought on by Hurricane Sandy.  Over 110 people lost their lives, thousands more lost their homes, millions remain without electricit/hot water. Personally? As a resident of Central New Jersey, I was merely inconvenienced for one week of my life.  My family did not suffer any tragic losses, and for that I thank God.  Luckily, the only thing I can say Sandy took from me was electricity, cable, internet, and as of today, tap water safe enough to drink.  Even so, during this time of inconvenice I had a lot of time to mourn those affected much, much worse than was my family. (The 11-day weekend without work/school left a lot of time for thinking.)
Sandy left her mark on the Flag on my front yard. 

What else did I have a lot of time to do? Eat.  My mother would not stop cooking. About a dozen meatballs, even more cookies, a couple bowls of homemade soup, and approximately five pounds of pasta later, I can officially say I am at my heaviest of weight gains. 

On our fourth day of stuffing our faces hoping for our power to return, my aunt suggested we attempt the Daniel Fast once we had the opportunity to get fresh food.  For those unfamiliar, the "Daniel Fast" is a biblically-based partial fast that follows these guidelines: 

  1. Only Fruits and Vegetables
  2. Only Water
  3. No Breads/Sweeteners 
Oh, and it lasts for 21 days. With every meal for these 21 days, you are supposed to pray for a purpose you determine before the fast. Each time you eat, you are denying certain foods for this spiritual purpose.

 Those who know me know that I am not the most spiritual person in the world. However, I believe in a time of disaster many of us seek answers from a higher power.  With the hurricane affecting so many people close and dear to me, coupled with my recent unhealthy eating habits, I agreed to sacrifice my sugars, caffeine, meat, dairy, and breads for not only my health but also to remind myself to pray for those whom have lost much more than me due to Sandy.  

Wish me luck as I attempt to eat like a vegan for the next 19 days (I'm already on day two) ... And say a little prayer for the State of NJ as we get through this disaster.   

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