Saturday, September 20, 2008

Riders on the Storm

Here's what happened last Friday night. Judy and I were watching the Astros game when the cable went off around 9:00 p. m. The wind was blowing hard, but it was nothing special. I'd already unplugged the computer, and now I unplugged the TV sets. We got ready for bed.

At 9:55, the electricity went off. I said, "It's started." I turned off the a/c and unplugged the refrigerators. Little did I know that we wouldn't have electricity again for quite a while. In fact, we called out neighbors last night, and there's still no power in our little area.

By 11:00 the wind was blowing quite hard, probably up to hurricane force. It blew like that until around 8:00 the next morning. We didn't get a lot of sleep, mainly because our bedroom is next to the garage, and the wind really worked over the garage doors. It banged them all night. The sound of the wind wasn't too bad in itself. It didn't bother the cats at all. It did bother me and Judy a couple of times. We're both certain we heard a small twister tossed off by the storm at least once. Maybe twice. We'd always been told that a twister sounded like a freight train, and that's the sound we heard. Judy thought the garage had been torn off the house. To me, it sounded more as if the roof had been lifted off the house.

I got up a few times during the night to look outside. There wasn't much to see, other than lots of rain. I could see the big magnolia tree outside our bedroom as it thrashed in the wind. It didn't lose a single branch, however. What lost branches was the big shade tree in the back yard. It has hardly any left. The time I looked in the back of the house, it was doing fine. The next morning, however, the limbs covered most of the yard.

All in all, it wasn't a bad night. Not one of the best I've spent, but not scary at all. Nerve-wracking, maybe, but not scary. We sat through Hurricane Alicia 25 years ago, and though it was supposedly just as strong as Ike, the winds didn't blow nearly as long and strong, at least not at our house. After that one, we just had a few small sticks in the yard. This time was different. I suspect there wasn't an undamaged tree in the whole town. Some were damaged much more than others, while some were simply uprooted. Judy and I got lucky in that none of the limbs punched through our windows or roof. Just the same, I'd rather not have another hurricane again for a long, long time. Or ever.


Anonymous said...

Boy, do I second *that* motion for no more hurricanes. Our experience was much like yours. The wife said she heard our bedroom window bow in and out. She feared that it would burst inside. We did not board any windows but had wood ready to barricade our garrison in the back of the house. For some reason, the sound of the wind is like a wind tunnel on days of regular storms. Ike's winds were like an amplifier. Hard to believe it's been a week since Ike came ashore, one of the longest weeks of my life. Hope y'all are doing okay up in north Texas. The weather's about to turn back to normal Texas September weather and, I suspect, folks won't be as patient as they have been.

Anonymous said...

You are lucky you didn't lose the magnolia. I live way up in NE Texas and we have trees down all over the place. We had one tree down in our yard and what seems like millions of limbs. Luckily, our power was only out 4 days.

Unknown said...

We've arrived in Dallas and are in a nice older hotel with free Internet. It's almost as if the hurricane never happened. I kind of hate to go back home.

Doc Quatermass said...

We had pretty bad winds here in South Western, Pa last Sunday. Cable went out just in time Sunday night/ Monday morning for me to miss Jack Benny at 1 & 1:30 am ET. Picture was off for a minute or so off and on all afternoon and frequent tiling on RTN. We didn't lose power but others in the area did (as well as the midwest according to a couple of cyber saddle pals who were affected). Power was out here for some for several days as much of the power company work force had been sent South to Texas (and probably other states). Just saw a story that areas of Ohio are still w/o power.

Unknown said...

No power = no fun.

Cap'n Bob said...

I'm glad you got off with relatively little damage and hope you're back home Real Soon Now.