Category Archives: Post by Abdelfatth

My Gas Station

The Lukoil gas station on Rt. 22 has been shutdown since Hurricane Sandy and it finally opened last week. I currently work as a server at Fridays in Springfield, and after every shift I do the same routine. I get smokes, gum, and gas every time. This was the same place that I went for gas and tobacco back when I first got my license. This gas station was technically my first gas station.

I know it is stupid to hold sentimental value to a gas station, but Hurricane took that away from me. Every thing around it was open on Rt.22 but the gas station. It has irked me for many months, so when it finally opened back up I felt like I was finally liberated from the storm.

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The Trip

The most interesting trip I have had in months was from April 4th -5th. Why you ask? My class and I presented our oral history project on Hurricane Sandy at the National Archive in Collage Park,MD. It was an incredible experience because we were six complete strangers that banded together on our very first oral history project.

I admit on the first day of the conferences, I was a little intimidated. The other oral history projects that presented themselves seemed so organized and almost aggressive. It was almost as if they have all done this before, and we were the rookies. As I paid more attention to all the presenters they were more nervous than I thought.

So after the very first day of the conferences (the 4th), my classmates, my professor, and I were invited to a country club with finger food, beer, and wine and then we had dinner at the restaurant next door at the expense of Kean University. We were also joined by my beautiful fiancé, who lives in DC.

Our presentation was on the 5th around the mid-afternoon, which was not the highest point of tension. That was the night before when Dr. Perkiss basically went through a Denzel Washington-like transition. She was the Remember the Titans Denzel who was stern but caring throughout the whole semester, but when she realized how ill-prepared we were as a group she let us have it like Training Day Denzel. After practicing my part all night at Amanda’s apartment and Dr. Perkiss’ inspirational pep talk before we went to bed was the prelude to our successful presentation. This was a great trip and I hope everybody involved had a great time too.

Between Two Dents

Everyday I’m reminded of Hurricane Sandy. Every time I leave my driveway i step on to a combination of three feet of pavement and lawn that serves as a split second  mind trip for my Sandy experience. My experience was about 9 days in the dark while I was in New Jersey, and about 2 days in Washington D.C. where my fiance lives when the power first went out. I enjoyed the time spent with my dear Amanda because all my worries in New Jersey were put on hold and we actually had time to spend wit each other. We have been in a relationship for over four years, and have been doing long distance for two years for our educational pursuits. We see each other any chance we get. Unfortunately, I had to return back to Jersey due to the fact that my job in Linden, NJ was one of the few cities in my area that had there power returned immediately. So, I had to spend a lot of time in a dark, empty house, while my parents and siblings were at a nearby uncle’s house in the area with power. My experience was bitter/sweet, but definitely more bitter than sweet.

My nostalgic barriers are the two dents that I walk between everyday, which is the dent on my car:

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And the dent on my neighbor’s lawn:

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These two dents were the cause of large branches coming down during the storm from the same neighbor’s huge tree on the front lawn. The same branches dented my father’s car and shattered my sister’s car windshield.They have repaired their cars,and my neighbor has filled in the dent left on his lawn, but I have not had the time to repair my car. Until I do, I will be sent be back to my distant memory of Sandy every time I walk in between those two dents.

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