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August 15, 2003

The weather is quite beautiful outside, warm, sunny, warm... just like the inside of the refrigerators in the bodega on 95th and Amsterdam. A little foot thermometer points really deeply into "SPOILAGE"... (It is the large yellow zone.)
I bought a few of the drinks that never spoil. Sugar water with artificial flavoring, some of the better stuff money can buy right now. As I am paying I notice that the counter is still filled with Ice Cream and other little perishable sweet gems...
"Too bad you will have to throw these all out now."
"Oh no, these good. Funny, many people ask about the ice cream."
"Hmm, interesting...", I did not want to argue with her on this one... "How was the night here?"
"I was not here, the boss was here, protecting the store, with another guy. Next door they smashed in the window at the jeweler at 5:30."
"5:30am?" I imagined a group of well prepared attackers who singled out the store after a night of searching for the most vulnerable spot...
"5:30 PM, daytime, they did not wait for no night."
"Wow." Now I imagined a bunch of drunk guys with a brick.
"The owner shot his gun, they ran like crazy."
"Glad nothing worse happened."
"I can see in your eye, you do not believe me with the ice cream."
"Well, I don't quite trust it."
"We checked the milk, we checked the juices. It is all good. Maybe because we run 24 hours. Always run..."... she paused.... "But I will not drink the milk either."
"No Milk, no eggs..."
"No eggs, no? Oh no, I had an egg sandwich today..."
"It will be fine... it will be allright..."

The pawn shop next door has indeed a smashed in window.
Duct tape holds together a constructed barrier on which somebody wrote "DON'T TOUCH"...
Otherwise, things look like any regular summer Saturday (more quiet than a Friday.)... It is odd to know that all thermometers are pointing to "SPOILAGE" all over the city... and I also wonder when it will be safe to buy ice cream again...
(Maybe it never was...)


just about 24 hours to the minute...
power finally back on in bed-stuy but with rolling black outs. we didn't have phones, they went out with the power...and still only kinda' have them now.
i keep getting kicked on and off the dsl.
can't seem to call anyone or anything via the landline :\

Posted by: em!ly on August 15, 2003 04:35 PM

Glad to see you have your power back on! Mine came on at 8am today....walked home to Brooklyn last night, it took FOUR HOURS! Strange thing, walking in the hot sun on the Brooklyn Bridge in a mass of people...they all started to SCREAM when the bride swayed wildly towards the middle from the weight of all the people...

Impossible to sleep in the heat last night, how did you do it?

I'm scared to death to buy anything perishable from a bodega for a long, long time.....I'm pretty sure they're all going to just keep selling the same old stock..

(And don't ALL store run their freezers 24 hours, even if they're not open? I'm not sure what she meant by that....)

Posted by: anna on August 15, 2003 09:04 PM

I think she was just assuming that not all stores leave their freezers on... ; )
To stay cool, I took a little towel (I recently got a cute one from Japan as a present!), soaked it with cold water and wore it around my neck. (It is good because it also calms you down...)
For sleep, I put the same moist, cold cloth on my eyes... so very soothing.
(Just make sure you have mosquito nets in your windows before you attempt any experiments with wet towels... those little buggers love moist fabric, of course...)
How did your animals cope?

And I will definitely not buy anything perishable from a store for a little while... : )

Posted by: Witold Riedel on August 15, 2003 09:11 PM

difficult to sleep?
try the fire escape?
of course now i have 20+
mosquito bites.

Posted by: em!ly on August 16, 2003 01:40 AM

There is an article about the food issues in the TImes today: Many Businesses Swallow Hard, Then Throw Out Food

Posted by: Witold Riedel on August 16, 2003 10:12 AM

at first thought i said, "Wow all that stuff the bodegas are going to have to throw out!"

But then standing in an eastern-bloc style line Friday morning in one of the corner bodegas that stayed open i realized their gain was PLENTY more than their loss. i mean here was a good sized deli with its shelves nearly wiped clean...and what are they really going to have to dispose of? the few gallons of milk, some meat and some ice cream?

Posted by: em!ly on August 16, 2003 08:54 PM

you are absolutely right, Emily, with the speed at which stuff is flying off the shelves in New York City... it will be not that big of a deal... I agree.... (hope)

Posted by: Witold Riedel on August 17, 2003 01:56 PM
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