blogging, book promotion, Uncategorized, Writers Co-op

Camping In After Irma

+++the sublime delight in opening the front door and entering the eye of a hurricane

As the sun rose in a blue sky the day after, I lit the Coleman stove, perked a pot of coffee, fried some bacon and eggs and after breakfast, I set up the chess set. (Maybe an interested neighbor will wander by.) Then I started recording observations to pass on.

I live in a condominium. The building’s solid construction allowed my lady and I to watch in safety as the winds struck a row of trees on the far side of the golf course behind us. The trees were lined up in a que towards the wind. The first tree was ripped out of the ground, roots up. That exposed the next tree in line to the same fate. And so on. A dozen large trees fell like dominoes. There were more fallen trees and flooding and a couple of downed power lines. The storm left us without electricity and made the roads impassable. We had no phones, Internet, social media, TV, refrigeration or air conditioning. Cut off from the larger, modern world, we did what people used to do. We went outside and met our neighbors.

Amazing how people shareing a disaster drop all pretence. Whatever you need, if someone has extra they give it to you; whatever someone needs, if you have extra, you give it to them. It’s the only game in town.

We shook off the shock and the stress. All the energy that had carried us through, the excitement of dashing outside to move our cars as the carport peeled away, the sublime delight in opening the front door and entering the eye of a hurricane, the surprising realization that it was over when it was over; all that energy, excitement and wonder drained. We were left to deal with the outcome.

We cleared away debris. And we made sure everyone was OKAY and had what they needed. Somebody set up a generator that powered three refrigerators. We plugged in a power-strip for people to use to charge their cell phones. 🙂 That inspired supplication of the cellular gods. For days, people walked haltingly about, arms outstretched to the sky, praying for a signal.

That evening, we set up a BBQ Grill and cooked everything we knew would spoil if we didn’t eat it. The grand event of the day after was a pig-out.

We drug a bathtub out onto the golf course to use as a watering trough for the cattle, oh. Wait. That’s from my novel, The Phoenix Diary. nm.

Want to know what your day will be like? Look at the sky. Concerned how someone close to you is doing? Walk over to them and ask. Bored? Go do something useful for someone else. Tired? Take a nap. Feeling sociable? Look for someone who’s bored.
Think camping out with other people. That’s life at our house.

The power just came back on, Sunday evening, a full week after the hurricane.  So, I’m posting this as Monday’s blog for the Writers Co-op. As for the emergency crews who work  in sweltering heat to restore power, well, what can you say? They are incredible men and women, a cut above the rest of us and we are very lucky to have them.

Note: The decision to ride out a major storm isn’t made based on information alone. The decision requires independent judgement. That’s what we have to do when too many unknowns remain after the facts are considered, make a judgement call. Too bad judgement is not taught in schools. But then, that would teach kids to be independent and people would become hard to control. Can’t have that.


12 thoughts on “Camping In After Irma

  1. mimispeike says:

    I saw pictures of destroyed trailer parks in Naples and got very worried. And when we didn’t hear from you (I thought cell phones/emails must still work) I got even more worried.

    My sister in Tallahassee never even lost power. I have a cousin somewhere in central Florida, haven’t spoken to him for decades, I guess he’s OK also. The people our age in my family, odd, I can only think of one of them who is on Facebook. It is, at the least, a useful tool for keeping in touch.

    A week, no AC? Blast from the past. I lived from 1955 to 1963 in Crystal Beach, just north of Tarpon Springs, with no AC. I hope you had plenty of candles, and plenty of books. That’s how we got through a hurricane late fifties. Our relatives who lived in a trailer in Tampa came over to our solidly built house. The power outage only lasted about a day.

    We always had a lot of canned goods. (Along with no AC, most people did not have huge freezers in those days.) My mother was not a cook-from-fresh person. Pork and beans and canned spaghetti! How’d we cook? Gas stove? I don’t recall. Maybe we ate sandwiches. Peanut butter and jelly, the old standby.

    My mother was a wreck but, for a kid, it was kind of fun.

    I’m so glad you’re safe.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mimispeike says:

    It’s been a hard week, hasn’t it? But all weeks are hard. GD is safe. We have that to be grateful for. Those poor people in Puerto Rico!

    My burdens this week are: 1. garden still a mess, now into prepare it for next spring mode, and 2. a dispute with our internet provider. They claim we are three months not paid on our bill. My husband pays all bills through online banking the moment the bill arrives. And he has the records to prove it. The money has gone out of our bank account, but has not been credited to Frontier, as of May. If I disappear for a bit, due to being shut off, that is the reason why.

    Liked by 1 person

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