I’m gonna preface this entry with the following statement: I have never been through an actual hurricane, so I may not be the best authority to turn in the face of a storm. Scratch that. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m the absolute worst authority on what to do in a storm. During the two (not really, because we were in the Northeast) hurricanes that I did experience in person, I was not the picture of Hurricane-preparedness. I either ignored all warnings to stay indoors (bad idea), opting to go on Hurricane walks through the deserted New Haven streets (how else would I get pizza??) or I decided to drive 20 minutes to the nearest movie theater (on an abandoned highway, although that may have been during a snow storm).
Chang-nom was my first typhoon, which is the Pacific Ocean term for Hurricane. One of the neatest takeaways from the experience was actually tracking the storm on the radar map, because for as much as it feels that I live in China every day (the unmarked white van full of men snapping photos of me this morning being a prime example of this country), I rarely wonder where exactly I am in the world. It had already been raining the entire month of June, and July really, so this weekend’s storm, aside from the gusting winds didn’t actually seem out of the ordinary. I spent most of it indoors, like I have been spending the majority of my time, partially because the humidity is borderline unbearable during these months. Seeing the streets of Shanghai nearly deserted, since everyone seemed to have heeded the warning, was sort of beautiful in its own way. Yes, despite all warnings against it, I did go out to run errands, partially out of cabin fever, partially to avoid the lines at China Mobile, and partially because a dear friend was leaving (actually hoping and praying that her plane wouldn’t get delayed since she, well she didn’t quite like China) and we couldn’t let her go without a proper good-bye.