Gowanus Flood Reaches the Bottom of our Block

Gowanus Flooding the Bottom of Our Block
(photo courtesy of Cameron Faulkner)

October 30, 2012.  Hurricane Sandy didn’t fool around.  Here in Brooklyn, the Gowanus Canal jumped its banks for the first time in over a hundred years.  By 11 p.m., the floods had reached the bottom of our block of Carroll Street (as shown above).  And the Gowanus is a stew of pollution you don’t want eating your home.  I reminded myself that we were uphill from the flood.  Even so, I knew it had already flooded the houses of neighbors who lived along its banks.  And the water was only half a block away from us.  Our internet, TV and phone were out, so it was hard to tell what was going on.  And it was hard to sleep as sirens wailed and waves of PCP’s rose in my dreams.

This morning, our connections to the world were restored, thank heavens.  The street outside our house was still dry, but a huge tree had been uprooted.  And when we looked in our backyard, our chimney top was sitting on the grass.  Scary, because it was installed after our carbon monoxide outbreak.  Rick has now re-attached it to the roof as best he can — and we’re praying the winds will blow more gently.

Tree Uprooted on our Block

The miracle is that the floodwaters of the Gowanus have already receded.  So while there’s hard repair work ahead, especially in other neighborhoods in NYC, there’s hope that things here will return to normal soon — we can already see our usual grafitti.

Gowanus Canal after the Storm

5 thoughts on “Gowanus Flood Reaches the Bottom of our Block

  1. Thanks so much, Val. Apparently, there were emailed/web site warnings not to go near/clean up the flood waters due to pollution — but we who needed the info didn’t have internet at the time. When we heard, we mopped the floor, having come in with polluted shoes . . .

    1. Karyn, thank you so much for your kind words and for your support! Things are slowly returning to normal here. I’m back at work today for the first time since the storm, but there’s no heat yet — I’m typing in fingerless gloves, counting my blessings 🙂

      1. No heat in New York at this time of year certainly sounds challenging. You still have a home, though, so I guess that’s major blessing (minus the chimney). I just can’t imagine how some people are coping. What’s the saying? “At the end of the day, Mother nature has her way.” No matter where we are, we never really know when she’ll start speaking.

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