Friday, September 19, 2003

Well, everything's still standing... there are a lot of problems with power outages and downed trees in the suburbs, but in Philly and on my drive to work, it was pretty peaceful. In fact, the Schuylkill Expressway, which normally is BY FAR the worst part of my commute, was nearly empty. Maybe a lot of people's alarm clocks never went off, or maybe a bunch of them decided to take the day off from work (whether or not they HAD to... what's their boss going to do? Come check on each employee's street to make sure there was power and no downed trees?). In any event, if the Excess-way was like this EVERY morning, I wouldn't mind this commute at all.

There were some traffic lights out on my way to work, though... one of them was at a really huge intersection where Passyunk Avenue, Oregon Avenue, and the on/off ramps for the Schuylkill Expressway meet. All of the connecting streets are two-way thoroughfares with at least two lanes in each direction. Fortunately, there were two cops on site regulating the traffic flow, because a lack of a traffic light at that intersection would be a major hazard. The other light was out at the off-ramp from I-476N to Chemical Road, and I cringed because the traffic can be very heavy THERE, too. Fortunately, there weren't other cars coming at the time I arrived there, so I treated it like a 4-way stop sign (as per the authorities' instructions during the news reports this morning) and proceeded on my way.

One thing I did notice is an inordinate amount of leaf debris. On some parts of the Expressway, the shoulders of the road looked as though they were carpeted with green leaves. There were some branches lining the edge of the roadway, also, but fortunately there weren't many of those. I'm not sure who cleared the mess over to the side of the highway, but I commend them for doing a great job.

Once I exited the highways and proceeded through the streets of Norristown, I again noticed the extremely light traffic. Boy, I wish the roads were this clear EVERY morning! There didn't appear to be much damage, fortunately, other than the same sort of leaves/branches which had been cleared to the roadside. There was one sign which stood on a business's lawn which was pushed down flat, too.

The greenhouse across from where I work appears to be missing a group of panes that I don't recall being broken before, and the garage with the sagging roof appears no different than it did yesterday afternoon. Beyond that, it's all over here but the cleanup. Thank God that this region came through the storm without too many serious problems.

Lunchtime... HOLY COW have we got a ton of calls to reschedule today! Thank goodness most people are understanding about it. Between the people who have to be rescheduled because a lot of technicians are out today, and the people who need a new appointment because they have a power outage, it's been a chaotic morning. The afternoon looks like it'll be just as hectic.

Oh, well -- we survived a tropical storm last night. A crazy workday is nothing compared to that. ;o)

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