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November: Like No Other Month

The month of November was like no other month. The entire peninsula was an epic mess. Twisted steel, shattered concrete, whole pieces of boardwalk found blocks away. You saw things that didn’t seem real.

Homes had to be pumped; debris, and then more debris, had to pulled to the curb. Sand was hip high on some streets. Electricity was out. Mud was everywhere. Cell phone service was spotty at best. Gas stations were closed in Rockaway and gas lines off the peninsula were interminable. Mayor Bloomberg said the New York City Marathon would go on as scheduled. He had to change his mind after a widespread uproar. A snow storm struck just nine days after Sandy. A presidential election was held. The A Line was out of service and a new ferry service started on November 12th.

There was more than physical wreckage to deal with. Some people were traumatized. And there were insurance matters, FEMA, building inspectors. Should you throw out things or wait for the insurance company? Many had no heat. And winter was coming.

In the those early days, it was hard to imagine Rockaway ever coming back.

The Wave finally published on November 30th, after being knocked out by Sandy for four weeks.

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