Friday, August 26, 2011

battening down the hatches

...with a little less than two days to go before hurricane Irene makes herself known, we're sitting here with our drawers unbuttoned and puddled around our ankles, which is not the place to be.
On Wednesday warning I again left a perfectly good and warm sleepy wife at 2am and went back to work a week early, this time to babysit a barge undergoing a thorough cleaning and scrubbing and mucking out here in NY prior to being put into clean oil service down south. This mostly entails me watching other people work and occasionally helping out, and included my first ever tank dive aboard a barge- funny how the compartments are so small compared to a ship's. All the same, here we sit on Friday morning, with a hurricane poised to come up our back passage, and the hatches are open, hoses snaking everywhere, and barrels of crusty oil residue sitting quietly at the deck edge waiting to be hoisted off. It's hard to picture the clutter being cleared off in time to brace for weather, but I'm told we'll be sailing in a little over 24 hours.
If all goes well we'll be mooring in a sweet spot tomorrow, as there's more work to be done at a well-positioned yard along the Gowanus river here in NY, protected from all sides, more or less, with only the wind and storm surge to worry about, if we can get the deck preddied up and everything not tied down tied down.
Anyhow, it looks as though this hurricane is poised to land squarely between our cheeks. Too bad. Not my first, and likely not my last. My wife and son are certainly going to be in for a surprise. They've never seen a hurricane. In that sense, I wish they could watch it from the big windows at my mom's house, where the action will be up in the Boston area. Last time, my brother, my dad and I watched the waves breaking over the roof of a neighbor's house while my mother yelled at us for being idiots and taped the windows with a big series of X's to keep the glass from flying if it shattered. Which it didn't.

Anyhow, for folks in the east, I wish you all well and will see you after. Going to be a busy couple of days.

Crap. I just realized that my truck might be in the surge zone too.


Bob said...

Stay safe, and good luck!

Irish said...

Stay safe out there :)

I found this pic thought you might enjoy it ...


Anonymous said...

Sounds like your over at Clean Waters S.I, I hope you went over to Joe and Pats they have the best pizza around and very nice looking ladies working there. Good luck out there, I am riding this one at home in the mountains.

Paul, Dammit! said...

I am at Clean Waters, until the COTP orders us out at midnight. No going ashore for me, though. Stupid healthy eating.