They were whirling dervishes this morning at a local breakfast joint in my neck of the woods. Folks were crammed into tables and taking a spot at the counter in order to nourish themselves while in the midst of preparations for as yet another storm of the century.
Snapping and zizzling noises were coming from the grill, as yet another batch of diced potatoes and bacon made contact, dishes clacked in the back room while being loaded into the washer. "The water usually comes up to the front step but that's about it," said Bobby as he flipped a couple of muffins around a froth of butter.
Theories and news flashes were spouted about with a lot of hand gestures and animated eyebrows.
"They are evacuating lower Manhattan," said one man. "We are not supposed to get hit that badly," said another, "we've been through worse." One woman sat quietly in the corner taking it all in, while a female voice from the dishwashing area yelled out "I am so sick of hearing about this already!"
All across the East Coast this afternoon there are similar Hurricane Centrals, spots where people hang out for a few minutes taking a respite from the grind of gathering supplies, making sure they have enough non-perishable food on hand and figuring out contingency plans in case the schools close.
Bobby said the diner is always closed on Mondays, but he won't make any decision about Tuesday just yet. Echoing a sentiment felt by many after harried hours of preparation for the the effects of a storm which have yet to be made clear, he quipped "Bet you a lot of people won't mind sleeping in, though."
Amen, and pass the blankets.