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Superstorm Sandy shows New Yorkers' divide


11-01-2012 11:07 BJT

CCTV correspondent Karina Huber

New York City is making every effort to return to normal days after being hit by Superstorm Sandy but there is still a clear divide between those with and without services and it all depends on where you live. 
A tale of two cities - that’s how Manhattan can still be described days after‘Superstorm Sandy’whipped through the area. In the northern part of New York the lights remained on, the shops open and life looks pretty much normal. In the south – a very different picture where the majority of the city’s residents are out of power, cell phones access is limited and many have to rely on the city’s shelters to get by.
The Seward Park High School is usually filled with students. Now it’s filled with evacuees – humans and pets – from lower Manhattan seeking shelter after being hit by blackouts and other disruptions caused by ‘Superstorm Sandy’.
This mother and daughter have spent two nights in the shelter. She said, “When I woke up there was no water. So I said, you know, you better get out of here and you know, go somewhere.”
Tae Kim, who has trouble sleeping, spent her first night in the shelter on Tuesday.
Tae Kim, an evacuee, said, “All kinds of noise, somebody coughing, baby crying but I say I have to go through. I cannot picky, you know. I appreciate people letting me stay like this in this situation. So thank God. I love America.”
Roughly 375,000 people were ordered to evacuate New York City’s flood-prone zones. Most of them in lower Manhattan. More than 6,400 of them have sought haven in the city’s shelters to get basic things like a bed and warm meal.
Most homes in lower Manhattan are without power and lack hot water. Few restaurants or stores are open and modes of communication like the internet and cell phone service are down for many.
Wakiem Logan, a lower Manhattan Resident, says he’s never before experienced anything like this. He said, “Like this? No. Never. This is the first. This is the first and hopefully Mother Nature - it will be the last.”
Uptown feels a world away. Apple’s flagship store on Fifth Avenue was packed on Wednesday. The restaurants were open for business. There were virtually no cell phone disruptions and there was a sea of lights. 
'Superstorm Sandy’ has made a clear divide between the ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots.’ But many of Manhattan’s poshest areas like Tribeca and the West Village are in the “have-not” category. Sandy may have been brutal but she did not discriminate.
That divide between upper and lower Manhattan will widen further as of tomorrow as subway service is likely to be restored to upper Manhattan while lower Manhattan is expected to stay in the dark and without subway service until this weekend perhaps.


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