hunkered down

By Jim Stanford on August 27, 2011

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Hurricane Irene hits the North Carolina coast. Click to enlarge.

As luck would have it, I was supposed to be on the East Coast this weekend, first for the nuptials of dynamo blogger, radio reporter and former Jackson resident Lauren Whaley, and then a quick family visit, the highlight of which was a fishing trip off Long Island on Sunday. I pulled the plug once the scope of the storm and associated travel woes became apparent.

For a few days, culminating yesterday, it seemed there was a crazy convergence in the cosmos: smoke from the Red Rock Fire filling Jackson, the prospect of a major cyclone blasting New York, new moon, high tide, Mercury in retrograde. After I returned from cancelling my flight at Jackson Hole Airport, a friend and I were having coffee on the deck at Shades when power lines began to crackle and explode above us at the back of Snake River Grill.

As officials reported that damage from the storm could amount to tens of billions of dollars, many of the world’s economic leaders were in Jackson Hole, talking about what’s wrong with the economy. Their private jets thundered over the Snake River as they flew in and out all week.

At times like these, staring into the eye of a hurricane, there’s little one can do but hunker down. Simplify. Stop. Ponder the might of nature. Perhaps many of the 55 million people in the storm’s path will do just that, and wonder whether the actions they take every day might be altering the natural balance.

Down on the farm in Chadd’s Ford, Pa., the wedding party — which took pains to reduce its carbon imprint — will be dancing in the rain, by candlelight if necessary. If rain on your wedding day is supposed to be a good omen, a sign of fertility, a tropical storm must portend something incredible — befitting people with the boundless energy of Lauren and hubby-to-be Jake de Grazia.

For updates on the storm, follow the TPM Livewire or New York Times Lede blog. Our thoughts are with everyone affected.

(Photo by NASA)

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Posted under Economy, Environment, Weather

6 Comments so far

  1. jojo:1013 August 27, 2011 2:45 pm

    Very good post.

  2. Cara August 28, 2011 11:06 am

    Hooray for Lauren and Jake. You know what they say…A wet knot is a tight knot.

  3. dswift August 29, 2011 7:40 am

    Nice tentacles. There indeed was plenty in the air the past few days.

    Knowing that Lauren & Jake & the entire crew would larf their way through the worst of it was all I needed to know.

  4. joe August 29, 2011 1:34 pm

    did the altaring balance succeed?

  5. Lauren August 30, 2011 4:13 pm

    We really missed you, Jim! We hunkered down to generator-powered hip hop and waist-deep floodwater. Last dancers left the floor at 6:30 a.m. We simplified our months of planning to a few key elements: dancing, laughing, togetherness. Wohooo!

  6. js September 4, 2011 11:15 am

    Fittingly, this made the NY Times:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/04/fashion/weddings/a-wedding-crasher-named-irene.html

    The print version has a photograph by David Stubbs.

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