I find it very disturbing that those people that think this storm was 'not so bad' and that the government 'cried wolf' and 'over-warned' people, seems to be the ones that are sitting in a high-ground area and never lost power (such as Manhattan). Guys, look around you, outside of your immediate comfort zone. In the media, both Swedish and American, there has been several articles saying this or quoting people saying just that.
I bet these are not the people that are volunteer firefighters trying to get a sick 7-month old to a hospital in the middle of the storm, or a friendly neighbor that comes over at 4 AM to get a second sump pump going in someone's basement. No, these are people complaining that they bought too much bread and water because of the warnings. Guys, grow up. Be real.
Millstone River, had record flooding at Blackwells Mills, the highest EVER recorded, at 21.24 feet (about 7 m) over normal. This is the river I have to cross to get to work... might take some days before the bridges are open. Manville downriver is evacuated and flooded. Bound Brook is horribly flooded. Things are bad and crazy out there, and New Yorkers complain that they bought too many batteries?
(1) 21.01 ft on 09/17/1999
(2) 19.24 ft on 04/16/2007
(3) 18.68 ft on 08/28/1971
(4) 16.84 ft on 07/15/1975
(5) 16.15 ft on 03/14/2010
300 000 households in New Jersey have no power back yet. We were just lucky to get it back so soon. (Actually, it is even more people without power. And part of a highway is now in a River. And so on, read more here. )
Brattleboro and many other towns in Vermont are under water. That is a street down there, under the brown guck. Our favorite stores in Brattleboro are under water, as is historic Hotel Latchis, you can see their brick building in the distance.
So, if you managed through the storm OK, that is great, but do not complain that you were warned too much. Next time your house might be hit by a tree, your stuff might be under muddy waters, or you might be out of power for days. You never know. You might just have been lucky this time. Nature is more powerful than you.
Here is a summary of the media coverage and destruction caused by hurricane Irene, showing that in fact it was really bad, whatever media and unaffected people say. Maybe not bad not for some pampered and grumpy city people in New York, but for the rest of us. Here is a quote from the same article: