Interview Reflection: In-Person

So I just got back from my in-person interview with Adam. It was very enlightening. I only asked a few questions, but I got the response that I wanted:

1. I didn’t give any thought about evacuating for sandy until about 36 hours before the mandatory evacuation was given. My first thought was one of agitation. “not again,” I thought. My family had evacuated in the same way 13 months ago for Irene and had to stay with family in north jersey for 3 or 4 days. Those days seemed like an eternity, not being able to leave the house and being forced to rely on family for help. When we returned to the house after Irene the only damage that occurred was some brown spots on the ceiling near the edges of the walls from where some rain must have whipped up under the roof awning. For Sandy we stayed with family in eastern PA, and hoped that we would be able to go back even quicker than Irene. We took fewer precautions this time, we didn’t move the other car to high ground, and took fewer things off the floor. As we stayed at our relatives in PA we realize that we would be there far longer as we watched the ocean meet the bay in mantoloking and we saw pics of lavallette, our hometown, under water. We were blessed to have family, altho we did get quickly sick of each other after day 3, and even more so when they lost power. Eventually we stayed at a hotel for a week, stayed with our fam again for a few days, stayed with a family friend in Sea Girt for 3 weeks, then finally found a month to month rental in point boro in mid November. We moved in in late November, only to lose my mom in early December. I’m not sure what exactly it was, she had a long history of health problems, and it was probably just one or two moves too many. FEMA was frustrating, as they refused to give us financial help for food or clothing while we couldn’t get to our house, but within a few weeks we did get money to cover renting costs while being displaced. That is still a far less frustrating situation than others experienced.
2. We were able to visit the house for the first time about 3 weeks after the storm. Amazingly, there was limited damage. The car we left behind had water reach the bottom, but it was a clunker anyway and with replacing one or two parts it still works fine. The crawl space was flooded with water from the bay, oil, debris, and possible sewage. Luckily, there was really only junk in the crawlspace anyway. My dad bought a ventilator mask to protect himself and cleaned it out after the liquid had receded and drained, and I carted the ruined old furniture, books, and various baby strollers or toddler toys that we had never gotten around to throwing out to the curb. The town picked up all debris. A volunteer church group helped clean the remaining sludge and ruined insulation and checked for mold. Thankfully, the water did not reach high enough to affect the floorboards. We moved back in to the house in early march, a little over four months since we first evacuated.
End of Answer
I think I did the best I could to follow the advice given by Gubrium and Holstein in Postmodern Interviewing. There really isn’t anything I would change. Again, I tired my best to be sensitive to the issue my source was going through and I think I succeeded.

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