A Dispatch from Post-Sandy Manhattan, by Evie, my First Guest-Blogger

My good friend, and on the weekends neighbor sent me this last week and I asked her if I could reprint it here, which would make her my very first guest-blogger. Welcome to my world, Evie!

So this is a little update from her world as she was trying to run a restaurant, Doma Na Rohu (the 2nd coming of the late, great Doma of the West Village), plus a guesthouse and an upstate rental in the midst of Sandy nightmare. I thought it was a great little window into the millions of inconveniences we avoid most of the time. Lucky us. And this is written by one tough cookie, pictured in my stickie pic with the fam.

We have no power but we do have hot water, which is a blessing.  We also have our fireplace.  So we keep that and candles going whenever we are at home — the weather has continued to be very overcast so it is always dark and gloomy.   I am keeping milk and eggs and various Doma salamis and such on the windowsill in the cold since there is no fridge anymore.  I have realized how extremely unfrontierswoman I am — I am fine on the no cell-phone front of course, but I get so grouchy at having to do the dishes with only a candle for light that I just give up.  Guesthouse laundry piling up — how did they get the washing done in the old days?!!   I tried to clean the rooms today and couldn’t even see to sweep properly but kept thinking, in the old days, when this house was first built and maybe for its first fifty years, this daylight level was all the light they had.

The guesthouse (and their apartment) from a long time ago.

We opened Doma yesterday and today with two dishwashers as cooks.  Yesterday I worked the whole place alone while Michael was gone for four hours picking up the dishwashers in far-flung Brooklyn.  It was so insanely busy that this Irish tourist couple jumped behind the bar to help, along with my crazy neighbor, which was actually fine until they all got totally wasted and I was working a packed restaurant alone and just trying to keep the helpers from breaking stuff.   When finally Michael got back with the workers, we were able to offer food — just burgers, eggs, etc., but people were so thankful to have food.  Michael hooked up a light to the car cigarette lighter using a long cord, and this was how we gave the kitchen a light to work by.  We sold tons of booze and a lot of food.  We tried it again today — people were so happy to have our coffee, which Michael brewed over the stove by holding a filter over a pot, rather tedious.  But overall today was much slower, we kept seeing tons of people rolling suitcases past and realized everyone was leaving town.  Yesterday was kind of exciting and fun but today was much slower and we had to start the awful task of throwing out food, which was really depressing.   We thought of going upstate to wait for the power to go back on, but there is no power up there either and we are not really in the mood for even more roughing it….

The kids are fine, but Leos particularly so devastated about no Halloween, and had to be carted about day and night by babysitter while we dealt with Doma.  So tomorrow we are going to try to take a day trip to pick apples or something so that they can have a little fun.

It is rather stressful to not be able to work, but we are all okay, and our house is okay, and no loss of life or limb, so we can’t complain (or try not to!).   As usual I am impressed with how hard Michael can work and how innovative he can be in dealing with emergencies, and hopefully he feels the same about me… : )  Sending love to all….

If anyone else has a dispatch they would like to share, please send them in!