People also can make a secure donation by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or by going to redcross.org. They also can text the word redcross to 90999, which makes a $10 donation.
Thankful..... But Also Deeply Saddened ( 10/31/12) ( Unedited )
I am writing this ( pen and paper at the time ) by the dim light of a flashlight. Through the kitchen window I can see Dellingr slowly pushing Nott aside. This morning, the first full day after Hurricane Sandy devastated the state of New Jersey, and wiped whole communities off of the map, I am sitting here watching Sunna as she slowly is pulled above the horizon. Her lovely glow is a blessing that warms my heart, and takes away the anxiety that darkness brings. As I watch our great glowing Goddess rise above the trees ( the ones that are still standing ) I understand why our ancient ancestors worshipped her so. While darkness brings uncertainty and fear, Sunna brings hope and the promise of a new beginning.
I am cold and tired ( no power, no heat ) and missing my morning coffee, but I am still so much better off than those who now wait in shelters with no other place to go after Hurricane Sandy destroyed their lives. As I sit here drinking a cup of tea ( I don't like tea usually ) I am grateful for its warmth and appreciate every sip as though it were a fine wine. The power they say could be out for 7 - 10 days, which is disappointing, but others may have a much longer wait for the essentials of life. I am so much better off than some in our ravaged state of New Jersey. My house is somewhat damaged and I need part of my roof replaced, but I still have a home, food, and my life. And I am so very thankful for these things.
This morning as I was starting to write this my neighbor who knows that I keep to myself, a Pagan in a Christian community, knocked on my door, and when I opened the door she opened up a paper plate with some breakfast items on it. I asked which of the items she wanted, ( I figured I would ask only for what was left ). She looked at me and smiled as she said : " It is all for you. I hope you enjoy it. " On the plate was a bagel half buttered, half with cream cheese, a corn muffin, and an apple. As she was leaving she mentioned that instead of eating supper in the dark that I should come down to the Senior Center and have dinner there . I was a little choked up as I told her I would consider it( I did ). I always feel out of place in a crowd of Christians.
As I sat there eating the wonderful breakfast she brought me, my mind kept flashing back to the night of the Hurricane. Just before the eye of the storm made landfall I heard flapping noises on the side of my house. I put on a coat and went outside in the blowing rain to see what it was. The top half of the aluminum siding was coming off and if I did not secure it , it would take the whole side of aluminum siding with it. I don' t know whether I was brave, or just stupid, but I pulled out my wooden ladder, grabbed a handful of nails, and in 40 mph winds preceded to nail it back up. It wasn' t / isn' t pretty but it stayed. Now that I look back on that moment I wonder how many other people, trying to save their houses and protect their families went out and did similar acts without thinking of the dangers.
After the eye came ashore the only way I can describe what happened next is as a night of horrors, that I will never forget. And I am 31 miles from the shoreline ! Those houses and properties on the beachfront in many cases no longer exist. Luckily almost everyone heeded the governors warning and got out. At last count, however, 14 people did not survive the worst storm in New Jersey's history. Even thirty miles away from the shore the winds hit my house and made it shutter and sway. It sounded like a freight train was going over everytime the winds came overhead. The scary thing was that you could hear them building in the distance, and when they hit it was bad. Real bad !
I wish I could sit here and tell you that I was the brave Viking warrior that we all make ourselves out to be, but I wasn' t . I was scared ! As I sat there in the dark with a flashlight in my hand I was terrified. Especially as I heard parts of my roof flying off of my house, some of which banged off of my metal chimney with a sickening sound. This went on from about
7: 30 P. M. until around 2: 00 A. M. when the winds died down to 20 or 30 miles per hour. That was about when I finally fell asleep totally exhausted.
Incredibly the front and sides of my house were only superficially damaged, but when I went to the backyard there were shingles all over the yard. I can only thank the Gods that my house did not leak, because I have no understanding as to why it didn' t. As I was picking up the pieces of my roof and putting them in a pile by the side of my house I thought about all those people less fortunate than me who were suffering much, much, bigger losses than myself. Yes, my friends I am extremely thankful that my losses were not so bad, but I am so very deeply saddened by those who are in shock and tears today. Those images you see on the media news are real people, with real families, and real heartache. What religion, creed, color, etc. does not make a bit of difference. Their pain and suffering is all the same, and it breaks my heart to see them in tears of agony !
Go with Odin' s wisdom, Freyja' s love, and Thor's protection ! May the Gods help those in need !