As The Observer was going to press on Tuesday, the death toll from what appeared to be the most devastating storm our city has ever experienced was up to 18, after 80 mph winds battered the city and waves as high as 14 feet washed through its streets. Among the storm’s victims were Jessie Streich-Kest and Jacob Vogelman, a pair of friends in their early 20s who were found under a fallen tree in Ditmas Park, having ventured out to walk Jessie’s dog. The subways were slowly draining of water and nobody knew when the system would groan to life again. More than 80 homes had burned to the ground in Breezy Point. As many as 750,000 New Yorkers were without power. The financial markets were down. Schools were closed. People were throwing around estimates of losses in the many, many billions.
A giant crane dangled limply, forebodingly from the side of the most prestigious new address in town.
Eleven years after the World Trade Center attacks, our city was again under siege. The sun was up there, somewhere, but the recovery was just beginning.
Not too long ago—or was it forever?—back when the name Sandy brought to mind a loyal mutt beloved of a plucky red-haired orphan and a tropical depression without a name was just stirring to life in the Caribbean Sea southwest of Jamaica, it was fashionable to complain that New York was getting soft. Read More