Saturday, August 27, 2011

Water, Candles, Cake

The intrepid Proper Bostonian is so far managing to write her way through an earthquake and a hurricane in the same week. We expect to be fine when Irene comes through tomorrow, despite all the dire predictions. We didn't make special purchases beyond our habitual shopping before a snowstorm (milk, bread, cheese, Diet Coke, cat food, litter). We did fill several pitchers with filtered water, just in case. (We remember running around to buy water when that water main broke last May.) We also have enough leftover birthday cake to see us through the storm. And there are tapers and scented candles galore if we lose power — or decide to turn out all the lights just for fun. We might fill the tub, too, depending on how lively the action is around here tomorrow. Perhaps Possum will decide to go for his first swim. He could use the exercise.

Natural disasters do not affect Possum's charms nor disturb his rest.

I remember Hurricane Bob, back in 1991. It was a major storm elsewhere, but it didn't affect Boston as much as had been anticipated. I was working at the MFA, which uncharacteristically sent its staff home early, even before lunch. My boss announced that he was heading downtown to Filene's Basement — there was either a big Barney's or Louis men's sale starting that morning. A couple of us drove with him. There was no one in the place: bargains galore! Later, I went for a windy stroll along the Charles, admiring the serious waves; I've never seen anything like them since. I will probably check out the Charles tomorrow, if there's a lull in the wind in the afternoon.

For years after Hurricane Bob, you'd see duct-taped Xs stretching across large windows all over town, or the unscrubbed marks remaining from the adhesive. I believe I actually spotted one such ghostly leftover on a downtown window within the past year. I guess the owner of that window doesn't need to bother to do it again. But no one is duct-taping windows this time, it seems. I never understood the point in 1991, but it did seem kind of cool, in a creepy, medieval way — sort of like marking the plaque sign on your front door.

My husband has so far mentioned his gratitude that we don't live in a basement only about three or four times. More to come, I'm sure.

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