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…and sort of the dark… (’cause even during a power outage, the city is never dark)

There was a power outage in a large section of Cambridge today around 4:20ish. http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2012/11/29/nstar-large-section-cambridge-without-power/0r93dJVZglkOagAFw8w9bK/story.html I was at work in the Community Lab stapling papers (really exciting, I know) when the power went out. Definitely a bit startling. But of course being at a big biotech, the emergency backup lighting came on. I went out in the hall way to see facilities people out on their walkie talkies. I waited a few moments to be sure things were generally safe. Then I finished my stapling and headed out.

When I left, I thought it was just an outage at work and wanted to deposit a check, but then I ran into Sam who had also left work early, and realized that would be a bad idea. So I headed on my way. But as I was walking I quickly realized that traffic was ridiculous –just like the situation–so I decided to be even more ridiculous, and started to walk home and take pictures of MIT in darkness (a sight I never thought I’d see at the the school that never sleeps).

These are some of the pictures I took on my walk home. All iPod photos, but good enough. Had I not been stopping to take photos, I think I would have beat my bus home. Also, it is very difficult to walk against traffic!(I was on a walkway, but I was constantly blinded by headlights.)

Boston on the left; Cambridge on the right. Both are somewhat lit, but in very different ways.

Cambridge on the left and Boston on the right this time. The lights in the sky aren’t stars, but rather helicopters. I saw at least five.

An image after I got to the Boston side of the Charles River. At first glance, this photo probably looks pretty average, until you realize that the row of lights is actually a string of cars along Memorial Drive and the scene looks a lot flatter than it should. Again the light in the sky is a helicopter…

My walk home reminded me that I don’t like hearing the hums of helicopters. Some people know that I struggle with the feelings sirens normally provoke (fear, reassurance, disappointment, defensiveness), but I’m pretty sure that the hum of a helicopter, just induces feelings related to fear. Something is wrong when a helicopter is near, but it doesn’t give me the same reassurance that other emergency vehicles do. I’m not sure I can verbalize why, but I think some of you may understand?

Anyway, that was my afternoon in Cambridge. Just glad I didn’t need to deal with a class of students in panic.