Escaped sea lion is sign of the times in New York
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An escaped sea lion is a sign of the times
The week before last, having delayed our departure from Friday evening to Saturday morning due to flooded roads in the New York area, we arrived at our Connecticut house about lunchtime to find our neighbors wielding mops and other implements to clean out water that had inundated their ground floor. In addition, their driveway was occupied by a van from the local Gary’s Pump Service, their sump pump having failed to fire up. We offered to help, but most of the mopping-up had been done.
I then scurried to our basement — really a crawl space — to see if we had similar issues, but fortunately it was dry, which I credited to some work we had done about 15 years ago to surround the area with a concrete barrier as well as install underground pipes to fully divert rainwater running from the gutters.
And then I tucked into one of the sandwiches we had picked up along the way — and a beer — to reflect on what had happened in the preceding 24 hours: That last weekend in September, almost eight inches of rain had fallen, a record. That vast swaths of the New York City’s boroughs and surrounding suburbs were inundated. That my daughter could not return from her job in Manhattan to her apartment in Brooklyn because the subway had stopped running. That a sea lion at the Central Park Zoo had used the rising waters to swim out of her enclosure (but not make it as far as neighboring Fifth Avenue).
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