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Photo of the Week: New York before Sandy

Sherry Mao


This photograph was taken on Monday 29 October 2012; the accompanying text was written on Friday 2 November.

Light reflects off a rain-soaked and deserted New York City street before Superstorm Sandy makes landfall.

This picture best captures the emptying out/taking cover that was happening in the city. Although now the opposite effect seems to be taking place; an over-pouring of cars and people as everyone tries to make their way back into the city.

Three-hour commute from Jersey and three-mile long lines for gas. Every bit of conversation I hear while walking down the street is about Sandy; she is definitely on everyone’s minds. Several friends are still refugees and have hitch-hiked into Queens to camp out for the next few days in order to charge and shower up.

Man, I have never seen so many people hungry for electricity. Huddles of people crowded around power strips, scores of individuals lining the perimeters of buildings, hotels, and Starbucks to mooch off the wifi. Incredible even to imagine the amount of people whose lives have been affected.

Sherry Mao graduated from NYU with a Master’s in English in 2012. She now teaches at a charter school in Harlem.