Sunday, November 11
It’s Sunday morning, Veterans’ Day. A beautiful morning out on Breezy Point.
The last few days have been a blur. We have been working some very long days which are made even longer by the insane traffic congestion. Eight of our ERVs in our group of 30 are out of action due to traffic accidents. The organization is finally coming together, but not without some times of considerable difficulty and frustration. Decisions about kitchen site operation, ERV scheduling, and routing are being made by people far removed and without input from the front. I guess it’s typical but…. very wasteful and demoralizing for those of us that are trying to accomplish the mission of serving those most in need.
Despite the difficulties and frustrations, we are getting the job done. Almost all of the national ERVs are now deployed to the east coast. It has taken some a week to get here from the west. We are also seeing many groups of people from all over showing up with truckloads and carloads of supplies and food. Some are setting up feeding stations on the streets which then become one-stop gathering, shopping, and entertainment centers. The range of donated supplies is amazing. We will park an ERV at these sites and provide hot meals, snacks, fruit, and water until we exhaust our supplies. We can carry about 500 meals per run. Once a site is established, we try to meet demand with multiple trucks daily. It’s not enough, but we are working as hard as we can. The field kitchens are prepping and cooking around the clock, and the ERV crews are on the road from early morning until well after dark.