Cars at the intersection of Hawkins Avenue and Portion Road in downtown Ronkonokoma had to routinely slow to a crawl, due to the massive amounts of snow that still coated even major roads Monday afternoon in the wake of the Dec. 26 storm.
But if driving was slow, local business appeared much slower, even nonexistent in the cases of the businesses lining the west side of Hawkins Avenue leading up to the Portion Road intersection - including Mesoyios Greek-Cypriot restaurant - just south of the Shell Gas Station at the intersection's southwest corner.
Shell station owner Ravi Parhar of Ronkonkoma arrived at work at 8 a.m. that day. The station was plowed and open for business, but he said business was noticeably down.
"Today's dead," he said, adding that his wife and two sons were scheduled to leave for India but are still awaiting a flight from JFK.
Paul Weber of Smithtown opened up at 6 a.m. Monday morning. People had been coming in to pick up weather-related supplies, but the store had quieted down around in the early afternoon.
"We're down to selling about 20 different items," he said. "Spark plugs, gas cans, shovels, ice melts, v-belts, snow brushes."
Nick Verdon of Lake Ronkonkoma, who also works at Agnew and Taylor's, said he helped push a car of a woman who got stuck in the snow. It took him an hour to dig himself out before leaving home, and once again he was hard at work shoveling - this time, the store's parking lot.
"I'll go home whenever I finish," he said.
Down the street at Bruno's Village Restaurant, things were similarly quiet. Bartender Mark Donato, of Holbrook, said conditions were so bad, the owner drove him and the waitress home last night and dropped them both off this morning.
"He has the four-by-four," he said.
Donato added that the parking lot behind Bruno's had taken five hours to clear, and that the owner's son was busy clearing the sidewalk earlier in the day, opening at 11 a.m. Though it was still midday, Donato was hopeful about business picking up later on.
"We've still got football tonight," he said. "We'll be open, full service."