The outer reaches of Hurricane Sandy pummeled Boston on Monday with startling ferocity for a storm whose center was so far away, buffeting the city with winds exceeding 50 miles per hour and pushing surf over sea walls.
Mostly, the storm acted like a giant weed whacker, breaking branches, toppling trees, and dragging down power lines. In Hyde Park on Metropolitan Avenue, the wind snapped the top off a tall maple. Two people narrowly escaped after a tree crashed onto their car on the VFW Parkway. A tree barreled into a gas lamp on Pinckney Street in Beacon Hill.