The first signs of trouble came when the Long Island Railroad stopped service because of flooding and a downed tree across some tracks. Knowing that we would have a limited window of opportunity for the event, my friends Gail, Alex and I decided to come in by car. But we soon got stuck creeping through a massive traffic jam in Brooklyn and then Queens. Initially unsure what exactly was transpiring, we erroneously thought we might still get to our destination until we discovered through radio reports why we could not get anywhere and how entry into Manhattan was practically impossible. Meanwhile my girlfriend Adrienne waited patiently in town for us; first at work then near the event. Manhattan had escaped the storm unscathed; they just got a lot of rain.
While my friends and I ultimately missed out on an historic night within the exhibition at 313 Bowery, we experienced something historic throughout Queens, where we saw the impact of the storm’s devastation first hand. It certainly was a dramatic sight: fallen trees, intense traffic snarls, the smell of a fire somewhere and firemen, cops and EMTs racing to and fro. That said, I never want to spend five hours in a car to travel 25 miles ever again. Ironically, Adrienne said that the line outside of the jam-packed Morrison Hotel Gallery stretched down the block (she was my +1 and chose not to wait), so perhaps if we even had made it in, we would have simply traded one traffic jam for another.
In place of my Julian Lennon story, here are some hastily taken snapshots of the recent NYC tornadoes.