Wednesday, August 20, 2008

All's Well That Ends Well

Now back to our regularly scheduled lives... Fay has gone away, without leaving heartache in her wake. Ok, I'll quit now. My parents are fine, though they got it worse than we did, rocking in their little RV and hearing of tornados a few miles away. Today all is back to normal. That's the weird thing about hurricanes anyway, it's not afterwards that's a problem, unless they nail us. It's not during either, which is usually pretty exhilarating. It's before!

There is nothing straightforward about preparing for a possible hurricane. We have days of warnings, sure, but hurricanes are notoriously rebellious, going where they will and not where anyone thought they would. That makes running from them a dicey proposition. You must board up your house, provide for your pets, miss work, head out in to murderous traffic on one of the few roads out of Florida, and figure out where to go, and hope there is an available hotel room. Going south or east means possibly getting hit worse than if you stay put, but going north could have the same effect, not to mention the thing could miss Florida altogether and you've missed work for nothing. Plus there are the unexpected things, like this Monday when a tanker exploded north of Tampa, closing down northbound I-75, the main evacuation route.

Or you can stay home. Which is frankly far preferable, but exhausting none the less. We were running around trying to get the right amount of bottled water and canned food for at least 3 days, which doesn't sound like a big deal, except I didn't know if it would just be the 2 of us, or if any of our sons would come, not to mention the grandparents. We had to fill the car tank, because there isn't always gas after a storm, but lines were very, very long. The station we were at was out of regular gas, but we were able to get premium. Next, batteries - Walmart was out completely, but BJ's had plenty. We had to decide whether or not to try to run the generator if the power went out. We didn't have a generator when Charley, Frances, Jeanne, Ivan and Wilma hit, but then we got one and this is our first opportunity to use it. It's not an easy decision, because not only does it cost $40 a day in gas to run it, but more people died from carbon monoxide poisoning from their generators than from any of the 5 hurricanes I mentioned. The heat was oppressive too, the air still and heavy. Monday I spent cleaning up the yard and porches of possible projectiles, doing laundry and dishes in case there was no water or electricity for a few days or weeks afterwards, making ice, cleaning house, cooking food that might spoil, checking on family, and a million other details that needed tending to. At one point, I grabbed the carton of ice cream, removed the lid, poured syrup inside and began eating. Hey, cleaning out the freezer is an essential hurricane-preparedness task! Plus storms make me hungry.

Storm day was actually kind of cozy. Very dark skies, lots and lots of rain and strong wind, and much cooler temperatures, added to our exhaustion from preparing, made it a good day to laze around taking video of cows in rain, among other activities, like eating! Thankfully there was no real harm done, so today we are rather sluggishly trying to get up to speed - and burn off all the calories Tropical Storm Fay brought with her! They say there is another one forming - but I don't want to think about it. Maybe tomorrow, said Scarlett.

Thank you once again for your prayers and well wishes!

13 comments:

nikkipolani said...

Tracie, it's so interesting to read about all the preparations and decisions that have to be made for the anticipated storm. Sounds like you'll be good and ready for the next hurricane that heads your way.

Sew Anyway said...

I wonder how well your garden, roses and dancing frogs made it through the storm. Did they survive?

It must be a pleasant feeling knowing that you were prepared. We are so glad to know that you and yours are all well.

Serenity said...

Thank you for sharing your story.
I think reading this will certainly prepare people in a similar situation.
So glad everyone is ok. xx
(It's Daffy by the way...this is just a spare blog I have :o)

Cherdecor said...

It was so fascinating to read about how you prepared for the hurricane! I remember your post right before it and you wrote as though it was no big deal. I wanted to say, "Rosezilla, get out of there!"

I am glad that it wasn't a huge storm! I am happy that your family and parents were okay too.

Betsy said...

Hi ~ thanks for coming to my blog and saying hello~ I hope you try the bread pudding soon and that it's a hit with both of you! What a nice blog you have here...I'd like to stay in touch! :)

Beverly said...

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I spent most of my life in South Florida, so I know all about storm anticipation and preparation.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

This was a fascinating read. Preparing for a tornado is a piece of cake in comparison. Just grab the dog and go down to the basement!

jenniferw said...

I love dramatic weather but the surrounding drama can be a bit much! At any rate I'm glad this one is behind you. Hurricane season is just getting cranked up, though ... :-)

Connie said...

I hope you are getting some well deserved rest! I am not an emergency preparation nut...however do like to have about 72 hours worth of stuff I may need in the event of disaster.
Florida is a great place to live but it sure could stress a body!!!

Rosezilla said...

Yeah, I'm chillin' pretty good! It keeps raining, which is cozy. I have to admit, I would probably just go to the beach and watch the huge waves when a hurricane approaches - my husband is the one with sense!

LOUISE said...

I haven't ever stopped to think of how living through frequent tropical storms/hurricanes affect peoples' lives, and reading your account has been really interesting, and a real eye-opener. I love golden syrup on ice-cream and even better syrup sponge pudding with ice-cream! I think after this you deserve an award, please pop over to my home blog to pick one up. x

Lavinia said...

I'm sorry for all the folks that live in the shadow of the threat of hurricanes, and severe weather. They can wreak such havoc. I'm glad Fay is gone and let's hope for a good respite before the next one!

Peek-A-Boo Street said...

Oh thank you for stopping by at Peek-A-Boo Street! I'm so glad that you, your family and friends made it through ok from Tropical storm Fay. I thought you were mentioning names from your family when going along your post. Charles..Frances, Jeanne..Ivan..Wilma..Then I realized they were all Hurricanes, wow! Stay safe! I love your flowers you posted to.

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