As I sit in my sunny home office writing this post, I am reflecting back to January 17th, 1994 when I was jolted out of bed by the devastating Northridge earthquake at 4:30 in the morning. In the pitch black chaos I somehow flew, barefoot, over downed picture frame glass shards to reach my infant daughter in her crib. When it was over, we found that all of our belongings, if not broken, were piled in the center of each room in our still-standing townhome. My first thought after I found a flashlight and peered around was, “OMG, if this is what it looks like here, what must it look like for the people that live on the epicenter!?” I didn’t know that we WERE the epicenter…
The apartment building next to us had flattened onto the carport below it, and the Northridge Meadows apartment building just a few blocks away had become a deathtrap for many. My parents had to move out of their home for 6 months to rebuild. We were lucky. Our home was new and solidly built. Damage was mostly cosmetic.
But we were without power for about 5 days as I recall, and it made me mad that only 20 minutes away, where we went to stay with my mother-in-law, people were going about their business like nothing had happened (her town had barely felt the devastating jolt).
Here in Los Angeles today, the sun is shining and it’s supposed to be in the 90s today. We’re all pleasantly going about our business while so many are not able to in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. I am reminded of that every time I look up into the beautiful blue sky and feel the warmth of the sun on my skin.
And I feel guilty. So I blog.
I got an email from my friend Cindy Slansky who lives in Queens, NY. She’s on her 8th day of no power. Cindy is the mompreneur behind GreenPaxx. She is incredibly inconvenienced, but is still thinking of those so much less fortunate than herself.
“I am on day 8 with no power here in NY and living at a family member’s. It’s been a crazy week. Just lost power to half my mom’s house. 4 adult siblings, 8 kids, Mom, husband, 2 dogs, a cat, and the elderly lady who would otherwise be alone are ALL now in a 3 bedroom apt in Queens…
I’m trying to be witty on Twitter and not to focus on this but there are so many people without homes. And I can’t get the visual of my brother (FDNY) who had to walk 2 blocks through chest high water and downed electrical wires to save 20-30 people last week. He ended up with bronchitis but is otherwise fine. I know people are resilient but there is just so much damage everywhere. I’m one of the lucky ones who is only dealing with the inconvenience of not having power. A young dad in my neighborhood was killed by a fallen tree while getting his family in the car to evacuate. So I am really putting things into perspective.
I was hoping you wouldn’t mind letting people know we are donating $1 from every item sold on GreenPaxx and on Amazon directly to families affected by hurricane Sandy. While I am going batty with 4 kids, no school, and my insane family, there are so many who have lost their homes and lives this past week. I won’t be able to ship from my site until the end of this week but in case anyone wants to try a few cool products and help the East coast disaster it would be great. We are actually expecting another huge storm on Wed and i can’t even imagine how those without homes are going to cope. I have limited access to email but even a few tweets to help Sandy relief not related to my products would be great. Prayers are also much appreciated…”
For Cindy, and ALL the victims of Hurricane Sandy, I’ve donated.
Here are a few ways you can help too:
- Buy Cindy’s cool caps and cool straws for your drinks and she’ll donate $1 for for every item sold.
- Write a few words of support to Cindy via Facebook or Twitter. She could really use a smile
- If you blog, tweet, or use Facebook, please share this post. And consider being a part of the Food Bloggers Event on November 8th to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy.
- Donate with no fees via PayPal.