Thank GOD! I'm not the kind of person who prays. At all. But I found myself hoping and wishing and begging whoever was listening to make everything okay down here. Holy shit, guys. Downtown Troy was a disaster today and I'm so horribly sorry for the businesses who were affected by this situation.
Here's the scoop:
The fire department and police were called at around 5:00 this morning because of an electrical fire underground. The maintenance man from my building noticed smoke coming out of the manhole covers and notified the authorities. Apparently, the fire was located in the wiring of the system that takes care of the steam buildup in the underground tunnels (please pardon my ignorance here) and when that system went, the steam pressure went all sorts of nuts and the explosion caused the manholes on the entire block to blow 50 feet in the air and through the second and third floor windows on the entire block. The last I heard, there were over 150 windows gone, mostly in retail storefronts and office spaces. Bianca, my friend who owns the pottery shop two doors down, was one of the spaces hit by the impact. She's okay, thank goodness. Actually, in all of this no one was hurt which is amazing considering the number of people out on the street this morning when the explosion happened. I still haven't been able to get into my shop to double check on what's in there, but the city's head engineer guaranteed me that anyone on the first floor was safe, and while I couldn't get too close to the building, I could see from the street that my windows were fine. I'll be able to get back in tomorrow to check and make sure.
Anyway, it's been a long, stressful day and I want to thank everyone for their well wishes. You guys are the best!!!