Pre-Hurricane Irene walk around town - August 27, 2011

I headed out for a walk around 8:20 this morning to take in the pre-hurricane sights in the city. As expected, the streets were pretty empty because that is typical for early morning in Manhattan on a weekend. And yet, it was eerie to walk around town knowing that intense weather was just hours away. 

Buses and subways were scheduled to run only until noon per Governor Cuomo's orders so this sight won't be seen in a while:

I headed down to the subway so I could document the look and feel of the system hours before total shutdown. It was a pleasant surprise to see I didn't have to pay a fare. Instead, the door was wide open to commuters. Too bad there was hardly anyone else around to take advantage!

I waited for several minutes but it was obvious my train was going to be a no-show for a while:

A train arrived and departed at the opposite platform:

It was too hot and sticky to wait any longer for my train (I was only planning on traveling two stops anyway) so I decided to leave the station and hoof it. 

Here is the city's solution for dealing with street corner trash cans. Pointless! It would have been more prudent to stack all the cans and haul them away instead of simply turning them upside down and leaving them unsecured:

Per the city's orders, all construction work over the weekend was banned and sites were ordered secured and made free of any potentially-dangerous debris. Inspectors were expected to roam the city to ensure the orders were followed. Several sites I passed on my walk took heed and battened down their hatches:

This site should definitely get fined. Look at all those loose boards and that rubble:

Many stores and apartment dwellers taped their windows in advance:

Good effort with the windows but I'm not so sure about that air conditioner:

The sky darkens:

The Silver Towers complex by Washington Square Park was just one of several sites taking the impending winds seriously:

However, I can't say the same for the tenants of this other complex by the park. So many loose items left out on the terraces:

Not the way to be a good neighbor. I hope these items were tucked inside eventually:

I wound my way to Washington Square Park. Oh dear...

I saw some people in the park so I ventured to another entrance to find another means of entry. The other entrances were still open so I wandered around the park square. Pretty empty: 

It'll be interesting to see how the red-tailed hawk nest fares:

An exit gate by the park's arch. I'm not so sure it is hurricane-ready:

At least not for the moment:

Next stop was the promenade along the Hudson. As with everywhere else in town, it was hot, sticky, and overcast. This FDNY boat is almost always docked in this location and at the ready:

Jersey looking smashing:

Little FDNY patrol vessel making its rounds and heading into port:

Looking back at Manhattan:

A cormorant having a float and hunt:

Stay safe, little fella!

It began to rain at 10:05AM (on and off) so it was time to go home. I wish everyone in Hurricane Irene's path safety and good luck!