Rock You Like a Hurricane


Photo Credit: Havana Garett

Havana Garrett, Guest Reporter

It was the night before move-in day, and I couldn’t have possibly been more excited to go to college. Going to school in New York meant that I had shipped a box of winter clothes and sheets to arrive at my dorm, and everything else I brought in suitcases. Upon my arrival it became clear that what I brought was definitely not everything I needed.  

My mom suggested we go to Bed Bath and Beyond, to pick up a mirror and whatever else I might need. Having rented a car, we figured it’d be easy to hop on over. The sky was thick with storm clouds and the parkway was adorned with orange signs that read “Warning: Flash Floods”. We ignored the warnings, assuming that this must be something that just happens on the east coast, there wouldn’t really be any flooding. We were warned that hurricane Ida was making its way to our location and we stupidly, ignored those warnings.

It started to rain when we arrived at Bed Bath and Beyond. The store was particularly depressing that day, and almost immediately we decided that instead of standing in a barren Bed Bath and Beyond, blasting 80s music that echoed hauntingly against the empty stark white walls, it might be good just to go to Target. 

As soon as we exited the store, it became clear that we should have never left the hotel in the first place. It was pouring rain, the droplets were heavy and thick, and despite having only been inside for a little while, rain had now completely covered the ground, a massive puddle covering the entire parking lot. Once again, we did not go back. 

The drive to Target was horrific, windshield wipers on full blast, the shoulder of the freeway was full of cars with hazards on. It was becoming increasingly more apparent that we had made another mistake, and that we should probably go back, but we were too far gone now. Target was waiting for us. 

Target was crowded, as worried patrons fluttered to the aisles. Over the chatter everyone’s emergency alerts were going off at different times, a cacophony of loud alerts mixed with outdated pop music. We scrambled to get everything we needed from the store, between items, I texted my roommates to ask if this was normal for New York, it was not. 

The water on the drive back completely covered the freeway, more than six inches of water converted the freeway into a makeshift pond. Everyone was driving erratically, flash flood and hurricane rain alerts continued to frantically go off on our phones. Even a tornado warning made an appearance. We had made several mistakes this night, and all of them resulted in a very treacherous drive back. Driving in New York is terrifying enough without a hurricane. Eventually, despite swerving and almost spinning out of control on the exit, we returned to the hotel.

The next day the roads were still covered with deep water, it had stopped raining, but even the train tracks were completely covered. Cars were abandoned in the middle of the road, parks had become ponds, everything was off. Despite the nightmare it was to get there, it would have been another nightmare if I had moved in without half of the things required, and all in all, it was a successful trip to Target.