NYC Style Blizzard

Yesterday we experienced our first blizzard in New York City. It was pretty impressive! We have lived in both Connecticut and Colorado, and been in some pretty miserable weather, but yesterday marked some firsts for all of us. The only way to describe the snow as it came down was to say, “Man, it is POURING!!!” — a sentiment usually reserved for rain. But the worst part was the wind. The wind was whipping around so hard and fast that there was just no way to avoid the snow. If you were looking down to avoid the stuff coming from the sky, the wind would just whip up the snow already on the ground and get you twice as hard! There was also lightning and thunder that accompanied the downpour, which none of us had ever seen before when associated with snow.

People trying to dig their car out on 3rd Ave

Being the southerners that we are, we found all the cars getting stuck to be pretty entertaining. I’ve heard a lot of people from the north say “Oh, southerners just don’t know how to drive in this type of weather.” Well I’m here to tell you, it appears northerners don’t know how to drive in it either! We were watching a movie as a family last night, but kept pausing it because the scene on the street in front of our apartment was so entertaining. There was a slick spot on the road right underneath our window. Cars would pile up 4 or 5 deep behind whichever car was currently stuck there. People would work hard and for a long time in the whipping snow and finally dig the first car out to a point that it could pull off the road, and then the next car would decide, “You know what? I can do this!” and get stuck in the exact same spot. It was a lesson in intelligence that we saw failed many, many times. Finally when a taxi got stuck for about 3 hours people started to wise up and back out onto the main roads again. That taxi was there forever. A crew of good samaritans (as we called them) eventually came out with shovels and dug and dug and dug until they were able to get him back out onto 2nd Avenue where the roads were a little bit better. They also stood out there for a little while and discouraged others from pulling onto 56th street, because as we could attest, passage was not an option. Our doorman told us this morning that some people, including an SUV owner, had actually just abandoned their cars in the middle of the road a little bit further down because there was no way out. The further you went, the worse it got!

We got up this morning and braved the conditions to go into the NYU Cancer Clinic because I was supposed to start chemo today. We were crossing our fingers that we would be able to get a cab because there were not many on the roads yet that we were seeing. Fortunately, we didn’t have to wait long, as a cab without his lights on pulled over and surprised us. We piled in and then slipped and slid our way down the slushy road to 34th and 3rd. One nice thing was that there wasn’t much traffic out there today! The places where the roads had been cleared had snow piled waist deep on the edge of the sidewalk, with segments cut out for people to walk through to cross the street, as long as they didn’t mind getting their shoes covered in the slush around the curb anyway!

We (Jack, Mom and I) got to the NYU Cancer Center without much incident and went up to my beloved 6th floor to begin treatment. We were practically the only ones there. Normally the place is slammed. It filled up decently as time went by, but my nurse told me that 50% of their patients had called in and cancelled today. It was probably a good thing, because it looked like 50% of the nurses hadn’t been able to make it in either!

Our Christmas Tree this year!

We ended up getting to hang out with Dr. Rosen a decent bit today and he explained more about this new round of chemo. It consists of 2 different drugs that in combination serve to enhance the effects of the radiation. I received one of the drugs today over a 4-hour infusion, and will receive the second part tomorrow through a 1-hour infusion. I don’t take the chemo home with me, but i do have a mammoth backpack containing 3 liters of fluids that I have to carry around with me. The noises coming from the pump sound like Darth Vader. It’s definitely not the most subtle thing I’ve ever seen! All of this will be finished by the end of the week, so that is nice. However, this chemo tends to give you mouth sores about 10-14 days out, along with other side effects that don’t show up until later, so even though it is a 2 day chemo infusion, I have to be careful and act like I am on chemo the same way I did while on the 16-day pump from last round.

My brother, Jack, left NYU around lunch time to go home and try to do some work and get a better flight rescheduled. He got a true taste of New York City in the process! Long story short, he couldn’t catch a cab, something my mom and I have become very familiar with at times. The problem is, he had recently had a procedure on his big toe and is wearing one of those open-toed boots on his right foot as a result. As you can see from the pictures, it was not the day you want to be trudging around the city in an open-toed boot! Although he managed to make it all the way home without getting frostbite, I can’t imagine how long a walk that must have felt like!

Ashley gets in tomorrow afternoon and I am very excited that she will be here over New Years and our 2 year anniversary! Hopefully the chemotherapy won’t affect her trip much, but it will just be good ton have her here for a while, regardless of what we have to be doing!

When we got home tonight I went up onto the roof with my camera and new tripod that my parents got me for Christmas, with which I have a mildly unhealthy obsession. LeeAnne joined me and we took some quick shots for a panorama. I think it came out pretty well, but would like to do it again when I can take some more time and not be rushing to get out of the bitter cold! Hope you like it!

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2 Responses to NYC Style Blizzard

  1. peggy redfern says:

    Gorgeous photo! It was nice to read a new entry from you.
    Sounds like everything is going smoothly, although I felt bad for Jack and his toe.

    Stay strong, Rob, you’re doing great!!

  2. Loved hearing the stories and looking at the pictures of all that snow. I miss snow down here in Florida.

    Rob, so happy you are doing well – soon it will all be over and you can move on with your life :o)

    All my best to you and your family this holiday season, Montye

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