From a fall to an election (plus some bits in between)

Clouds in PhillyIt’s been a long time since I have written for which I can only repeat my apologies to infinity. Believe me when I say that I have missed the writing more than you have missed reading it. It’s good to be in touch again though and long may it continue…

My silence started with a loud crack from my left ankle as it twisted horribly underneath me while I was trying to run again way back in August. This has meant combining supports, frustration, crutches, annoyance and hobbling. While temporarily excluded from the walking world, I finally got round to setting up my webspace for my blog. Now, at last I am now making painful steps into physiotherapy and at finally this site is up and running!

Kites on Long Beach IslandMy sister came to stay with us for too-short a while. During the time she was here we managed to fit in two trips away – one to Long Beach Island and the other an indulgent couple of days in New York City. The places we stayed at were at opposite ends of the spectrum. One was a beautiful, spacious, luxurious house equipped with anything and everything you would ever need on a beach holiday. The other was someone’s basement in Astoria, complete with microwave and pull-out beds.

Due to being severely hobbled, we took a couple of open-top, rainy bus tours in NYC venturing into hitherto unknown regions of the city such as Harlem and heard previously unknown stories, such as the dogs in the basement of Macy’s. NYC, especially with a pneumatic boot, is always intense but buzzy. As always I come away from the city feeling that there is so much to see and wanting to explore more.

The beaches on LBI were as lovely as the barrier island beaches are; long stretches of sand and dunes, with the sea and sand peppered with surfers, fishermen and families. Unfortunately the water was a bit too cold for a last 2012 dip in the ocean – although I think Seb was very tempted, he was put off complete submersion by his feet and toes being devoid of feeling after 2 minutes of jumping in the waves.

And then came Hurricane Sandy… the storm was built up over a few days, with the pundits and anchors on the tv getting very excited about how badly hit Delaware and PA were going to be. Eventually I decided that the emma-ostrich approach was not really going to work so I went panic buying with the rest of the surrounding area. Garnet, whipped up into more of a frenzy, was out from practically 3:30 am Sunday night almost until the driving ban came into force as we all hunkered down to wait for the big one. I don’t think we have ever been quite so prepared for anything in our lives. We had bins full of water for flushing the toilet, food, camping stoves, disposable plates, dry wood and I even got all our important documents in a safe place.Hurricane Sandy

The waiting was the worst part – watching the creek slowly rise at the bottom of the hill until the road flooded and we were blocked in. Happily, Garnet is a nervous waiter and managed to bake enough cookies to see us through. Fortunately the storm headed further north than projected – otherwise we would be in the awful way that NYC and New Jersey is in. Seb’s school and Garnet’s work closed for two days as there was a driving ban and our power was out for one, but thankfully nothing more. So we have packed away our camping gear for the next one…

With the whole area reeling in shock from the terrible pictures and stories from NJ and NYC there was a welcome break from election coverage and in the end voting day appeared suddenly at the start of this week. We went along to the Delaware Democrat party at the Queens theatre in the evening to watch the results. The closeness of the exit polls made for a tense atmosphere with the Democrats lagging behind for the early part of the evening – there were occasional cheers when the votes in their favour stood at 50% or more. Then at some point (maybe during the speeches), the tide changed, there were more cheers and the blues were pulling ahead towards the magical number of 270. The TV analysts were discussing how many more states were needed to win and the cheers around the room became louder and more frequent. People were whispering ‘We have Ohio, he’s won’ before CNN announced the result. The night ended with noisy and emotional celebrations from inside the Queens theatre. It was a great night, but please don’t ask me to explain the voting system. I have had it explained so many times I am sure people are fed up of me asking.

I am on the look-out for Garnet’s extensive interview about UK general election nights and his enthusiastic explanation of Peter Snow and the Swingometer to appear in the local press.

In between these happenings, we have had a fairly quiet time, lots of socialising with friends – always good. As always, I missed bonfire night, but Seb managed to adequately fill his pumpkin on Halloween. Monty is getting a bit greyer and does not make any allowances for my injury – he is not the slightest bit protective. I tried using a stick to help myself up a hill the other day, but he thought it looked fun to chew and wrenched it from under me. Seb is loving being back at school and these days he even tells me what he has learned and taught us about why Pluto is no longer a planet.

Thanks for sticking with me during the absence – I am happier in this space, so watch out for more updates!

More photos here


8 thoughts on “From a fall to an election (plus some bits in between)

  1. Wills

    hi Em

    loved the latest installment and so sorry to hear you broke your ankle! I didn’t know..!
    Gorgeous photos. you should make a career of it!


  2. Dad

    Good to get an update – speak soon. I am off to the Gabon on Monday 19th for a week to look at one of our projects. Also, have to work as well as we have a new project director on site who needs a bit of help with things I know about. Really looking forward to it!

  3. Wendy

    It was great spending election night with you and Garnet. Don’t worry about trying to understand the U.S.A. voting system – most Americans don’t understand it either!
    Glad to hear your ankle is on the mend and looking forward to more photography and blogging with you in 2013.


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