revive. recover. rebuild - or what's a jersey girl do with dirty hair anyway

I can't really write about this yet. It is too raw and unsettled

(and cold and dark here)

but just wanted to post that we are OK.

The pictures on the television do not really do it justice - if you remember the book/movie The Road - that is kind of what does it justice

(except of course happening here in NJ, we all have much cooler hair ... even when it is dirty and tied back with things that resemble bungie cords - yes, we can even rock those).

I grew up at the Jersey Shore and have lived in New Jersey my entire life

(except folks that live here don't call it that - we just call it the beach)

and so has hubs. We were flooded out and evacuated more times than we can remember as kids. George lost an uncle and two cousins when their fishing boat capsized during a storm; his aunt bought cold cuts, swept sand from her floors and had a funeral on her front porch.

She cried later.

Maybe just being in the proximity of an ocean so strong and so powerful can't help but rub off on the people here

(maybe it is our proximity to New York, people there are pretty tough, too)

although I suspect people are people wherever you find them.

We aren't nice. We talk fast. We walk fast. We drive like maniacs. We will beep at you in 1.5 seconds if the light turns green and your car is not moving through the intersection. We have roads called circles where the only rule is there is no rule and whoever doesn't stop has the right of way.

We curse. If you bring your kids to a Jersey diner for breakfast they will most likely learn some words you will not want them repeating at the dinner table (from our kids probably).

But we are kind. We work together. We will give you the shirt off our back and yes, our backs often have tattoos and tan lines (and muscles ... we work hard).

We do what we have to do.

We are mostly all from here or from New York because who the hell would want to move here, so we have roots; the kind of roots that go back generations - roots that can withstand 80 MPH winds actually.

We've heard all the jokes about how classless we are, how funny we talk, about turnpike exits and polluted air and we laugh right along with everyone because the less anyone knows about how freakin' beautiful it really is here, the more likely we are to have this place all to ourselves. 

That's all I have to say today - I am making myself ferklemped and here in Jersey we cry later. If you are from these parts you know what this is. If you don't, you might if you watch Chris's video:

(the freestanding house in this video used to be a block in from the beach on a road that doesn't exist anymore - the houses on the beach side are ... gone)

NOTE - Maybe one (of many) good things that can come from this is that we can finally get over any need we have to glamorize and dramatize turbulence, the end of the world, death and destruction - ala vampires and zombies and survivalists - let's not focus on this crap anymore - it sucks.

xo everyone - a big thank you to Vinnie and Maribeth for the lentil soup, Harry Potter, offer of a hot shower and internet use to keep Olive biting, Chris for this video, lanterns and the generator and Kella for the barbecue turkey chili and Halloween candy.


Viktoria said...

I´m speechless cat!
I thought of you a few times when sandy was in the news !
But this scene of destruction is beyond all imaginings .
It´s unbelievable.
good thoughts, vibes, all best for you and your family!
Hope it will be back to normal any time soon!

Catherine Ivins said...

thank you Viktoria- xo to you and your family! YES to normal, a new more appreciative normal it will be

lynn bowes said...

I've fretted about you and wondering if and when you'd surface. I just scanned your post to see if you were even still in NJ and I'm just relieved that you're - jeez, I don't know what - alive?

Praying for you all :: lynn

akaCINDERS said...

I've been worrying about you all too. I hope your house is standing. I'm so glad you're still standing, but I already knew you were tough but kind.

Catherine Ivins said...

don't worry guys we only lost a truck and minor things! so many lost everything it is overwhelming - just hoping all the low income renters probably without insurance by the beaches get help - many are mexican and we hope whether legal or not they are getting helped!

Dawanna Young said...

Cat, it's just unbelievable.
Thank you for sharing with those of us who are far away.
Once it's off of the news, it's easier to pretend that it's all ok.
It's obviously not going to be ok for a long, long time.

Sherry Truitt said...

From one cold New Jersey girl to another, I'm thinking Roseanne wrote that song, "what isn't killing us is making us stronger" for us!


Catherine Ivins said...

thank you again Dawanna! and yes, Sherry we are definitely in this 2gether! xo to you - why does it feel colder inside than outside - do these houses have zero insulation?!

Orion Designs said...

I've been thinking of you Cat & of Sherry. I'm glad you're both ok. I have family in the area and they are fine too -- a bit rattled, but fine. I grew up on Staten Island and can't believe the images on the news. So much devastation.

Jane Pierce aka zJayne said...

...more than kind you are
.. been thinking of you too...

Catherine Ivins said...

xo Jane and Vicki

KJ said...

A warm hug and a sweet kiss to you and yours Cat.

Wear Your Wild said...

So glad to see you post Cat! I've been thinking about you. I was about to convo Sherry, but thought I'd check out blog world first. My heart goes out to everyone on the Jersey shore. This ex-Jersey girl just doesn't have the words.

doforanimals said...

Glad you and family are safe. I've been through a hurricane and it is not pretty. Stay tough.

Isabel said...

sending hugs and prayers

Lisa said...

Wonderfully said. Stay strong.

Catherine Ivins said...

thank you everyone for all your amazing comments - my love to all of you