Grey November

Thursday 11/1 – Slowly, we are recovering our good humor. The huffing and puffing of the storm two nights ago scared us badly. David and I drove to our dog groomer this morning, and found the roads mostly clean and passable, the morning rush hour almost normal.

When the sun comes out again, we will begin to clean the yard…again. The leaves we collected last week remain stashed in a compost bin, and the branches piled on the street remain topped up with new fallen leaves and branches.  New branches, twigs, and leaves cover the lawn and sidewalks, or lay piled around the trash and recycle bins where they gathered during the high winds. We are so fortunate to live on high ground far from the coast. 

This morning we removed our bird feeders from the garden shed where we had stored them for safe-keeping during the hurricane. I haven’t seen a bird since the storm. I hope they will return soon to find filled feeders and plenty of suet. Devastation in our area was mostly non-existent, nothing like the awful events further north south, west and east of us. 

The founders were exceedingly wise when they selected the location along the Potomac for the nation’s capitol. Other than being attacked and burned by the British in 1812, the Capitol has remained fairly safe and secure. Even the Confederates who attacked all around the city never laid a glove on it.


Lately, Mage over at Postcards has been posting snaps of various places and things she photographed around our city. Fortunately, she and G visited before Sandy came to town. I do want to correct one thing she wrote, however. She said she came “out” to Arlington, but we think of Arlington as part of the city.

De jure — Technically Arlington was Washington DC for a long while after the founding of the city. Today DC  crosses the river and lays 6 blocks from our house (Reagan National Airport, Pentagon, and Arlington Cemetery). 

De facto — About 20 years ago, the Census Bureau described the two entities, Arlington and Washington DC  as a Central City, i.e. urban core of a Metro Area. Various localities around Washington including settlements in Maryland and Alexandria City in Virginia protested loudly over the inclusion of Arlington in the urban core.  To appease these jealous jurisdictions with their complaining Congressional Representatives, the Census Bureau “undesignated” Arlington as officially part of the central city of the Metro Area known as Washington DC but the physical connections remain.  In addition to the connections listed above, Arlington retains water, sewer and other connections with DC. Most of the Arlingtonians I know think of their extremely liberal “blue” county as part of DC not Virginia.  


  Friday 11/2 – The sun finally came out today. So good to see it after a week of dull wet grey unpleasant weather. The yard is a shambles and confused snowdrops are poking up everywhere. The birds have returned to the feeders. Saw Mrs Cardinal under the berry suet with Mr on top.  Soon one of the Downey Woodpeckers arrived and several Sparrows. 

We found a Carolina Wren trapped on the porch and held the door open for her escape.  She must have been after the seed I spilled yesterday, but I don’t know how she could have known I spilled it (I swept most of it up) or how she got in. 

We have been loading clothes in the wagon for a trip to Goodwill. David has a third call into the Red Cross but no response.  Folks need warm clothing in New Jersey and we have bags to send. —000—  





13 thoughts on “Grey November

  1. Even those not hit with the destruction shown on TV suffer. While cleaning up the leaves, twigs, other debris and retrieving outdoor items from their temporary storage, you are constantly aware of those who are suffering great loss. And even those who haven’t incurred tangible loss may well be experiencing the emotional loss of a familiar, even beloved environment of historical and everyday landmarks that defined and guided their movement in their community.

    Our oldest son and colleagues departed Atlanta Sunday 10/28 to prepare for restoring power on the East Coast. They are now in New York and he hopes to be back home by Thanksgiving.


  2. “Grey November” is a good description of all that’s happened. We here in North Carolina ducked a bullet and. although thankful, it is hard to see all the devastation that’s been piled on those North of us.


  3. Great recap of an interesting weather week. Also, interesting facts about Arlington. We have probably been in Arlington more than DC itself during our several visits. That’s only one of the many, many things that the founding fathers were prescient about.

    P.S. My limerick is posted.


  4. Ha,G and I disagree with all those official folks. It’s like North County cities are not part of San Diego. Those fools in Sleazy Beach, me among them, feel our tiny Corner of the world isn’t part of the big city, but under all the bravado, we know we are wrong. 🙂


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