August 30, 2011

Love Thy Neighbor

First, I need to get some things out of the way. I am not religious so the title of this post may confuse people who know me, keep reading and it will make sense. Secondly, you may notice that I rarely post, mainly because I have never settled on a theme for this blog and don't know what to say. Thirdly, we Jerseyans are a hardy bunch yet we run to the stores and empty the grocery shelves at the first sign of a snowflake or idea of a hurricane, and then we complain how roads were closed for no reason when we find that our immediate area was not impacted by whatever storm was to come our way.

Today I have something to say as I sit on my deck with the sun blinding me as I write this post.

We prepared for hurricane Irene yet were quick to deny how powerful the storm would be. People were annoyed as they waited in line for a cup of coffee, the day after the storm, at the only open Dunkin Donuts for a 10 mile radius, oblivious to the fact that the other Dunkin Donuts were closed because my town has not had power for 3 days.

Losing power is an inconvenience as is having to replace the second floor bathroom ceiling that is no longer gushing water. But that is all that is is--an inconvenience, a minor one at that. It is not life changing. No one was injured and I was forced to clean out my refrigerator that should have been cleaned out a year ago, to that I thank you Irene. What is life changing is the damage to the lives of people in Cranford, NJ whose sanctuaries have been destroyed by 14 feet of water and has also ruined irreplaceable items. My heart bleeds for my best friend who cannot get into her home because the water is still too high. I pray for another friend that she will be strong enough to deal with the reality that her home has been deemed condemned because a wall caved in from the storm that most of us believed would be nothing more than a strong summer rainfall.

Last night I drove through the streets of Cranford to see if I could get to my friend's house and see if I could be of some help. Her street was blocked because the homes beyond the barricade are unihabitable. Today my husband replaced my 80 year old neighbor's failed sump pump so the foot of water in her basement could be released.

My point of this post? I am glad to have electricty so I can check my email, Facebook account, and type this post BUT I needed to take this time to encourage people to check on your neighbor who may not have visable damage to their property but within the confines of their home. So, even if you don't want to Love Thy Neighbor at least Help Thy Neighbor, one day you may be the 80 year old widow who does not have the strength or knowledge to unflood your basement before mold sets in. Or you may be the 65 year old, with high blood pressure, pulling up soaked carpet so you can bring your house back to some kind of order in time to serve your family a holiday dinner.


  1. Great post, Lita. A great message to be mindful of others and to be grateful for the blessing of a clean fridge.

  2. Wonderful perspective, Lita. You really capture what is important.