Saturday, 15 September 2012

New York .. weather alerts, watches and warnings .. never a dull moment!

If you're a follower of my blog you will know that my trip to New York at this time last year was not without it's adverse weather. Well, this year was no different!

Good friends at The Good Fork
I decided to go out a day earlier than I needed to so that I could organize myself and ease into the time zone, but more importantly to catch up with friends as the grueling schedule that was to follow meant that I would have little time to do this. We spent the first evening watching the sunset at Red Hook in South Brooklyn and picnicking on pre-dinner cocktails and nibbles. Red Hook is the only part of New York City that has a full frontal view of the Statue of Liberty, so we had a great view as it slowly lit up in the distance. It was a beautiful evening, calm and warm and perfect for chilling out after a long flight followed by a lengthy wait of over an hour in the immigration line. When it got dark we went for dinner at a nearby restaurant The Good Fork.. delicious food from an eclectic menu selection.

Leisure time over way too quickly and it was back to work .. the start of over two weeks at the US Open Tennis at Flushing Meadows. The first day brought tropical rain and high humidity and once again we had issues with a hot studio and our talent melting under the unforgiving lights .. sweaty brows and frizzy hair is not the look we were aiming for but had to put up with regardless! However, once we got to grips with cooling an open air studio (not easy) and the weather got a little better it wasn't such a problem. As we went into week two, we had a bit of rain again and a delay in play was looking very likely. But with a bit of re-scheduling we were back on track and everyone was looking forward to going home on time.

Boris battles with the brolly
All that changed in the last couple of days. More rain was forecast and matches started to get bumped to the next day. By Saturday, we were getting weather updates that a storm was on its way. A torrential downpour ensued with such gusto that the drains could not cope and our green room come make up room started to rapidly fill with water until it was almost up to our ankles! Someone came running in and said we had to evacuate the studio pronto as there was a tornado warning and it was heading our way.  We grabbed our things (I had to leave my make up kit as it was) and waded through the flooded practice courts to the 'safe' area in the Arthur Ashe stadium. We were all soaked through but we had to laugh because we looked a state and above all else we were safe. (Luckily I had my trusty flip flops in my bag so I could change out of my wet trainers and socks!) Thankfully the tornado bypassed us and hit further down the coast without doing too much damage.

Within an hour the sun had returned, the water had drained away and the courts were being mopped up. You would not have known anything had happened! The play resumed and we went back on air in seemingly perfect conditions. But .. as with these adverse weather systems we were informed that there was a massive storm heading our way with another possible tornado .. and in just a couple of hours we were ordered to evacuate the grounds completely and head back to the cityIt was a little worrying and I started texting family and close friends to say we were all safe just in case! All in a days work! 

Andy pays us a visit
As a consequence, the matches fell behind and we then had the women's final on the Sunday and the men's on Monday. You should all know the rest .. Andy Murray did us proud by winning his first grand slam title and we had the privilege of having him in our studio at the end of it all.  We couldn't have hoped for a better result!

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