Sunday, September 14, 2008

Surviving Ike...

Be sure and click each image to enlarge it, I uploaded them smaller than usual.

(fire on powerline behind our house, 3pm-ish)

(two hours later)

First, please say a prayer or three for the folks in southeast Texas and south Louisiana. Those who stayed by choice(or not) and those who evacuated will need our prayers and good thoughts directed toward them for a good long while, as well as the people who are providing them aid. I can only imagine what hell they are all enduring. All of my relatives in the Houston area and Galveston are alive(and uninjured as far as I know). None of them left but they are now stuck there with no power, and I'm pretty sure, no way out.

Ike hit us with 45mph winds for much of Saturday. Late in the afternoon they started picking up even more. No national channels were showing it but they actually increased to around 70mph according to the National Weather Service. It was pretty rough here til well after dark.

We were so, so fortunate. Our power was only off for 6 hours so it wasn't the "real deal", but I consider this to be a great learning experience since I've never been through anything like this in my life(that I can remember). We know what we needed and didn't have(paper plates and cups, C batteries for the radio) and what we had but didn't need(get-away bags with clothing and shoes). Our biggest issue was that many of our things for cooking(camping gear in other words) were still in the attic.

In east Texas we are usually dodging tornadoes which are sudden disasters. However, in the event a tornado destroys power lines, we'd be in the same shape even if it didn't come near our house. Definitely eye-opening!

(backyard during the first part of the storm, it did get worse)

(limbs from our tree, not really limbs though, more like twigs)

(girls helping with the clean-up)

There are dozens of trees down in our neighborhood and a house one street over lost half its shingles. Mark had to deliver some beds to a temporary shelter(for over 500 of our town's own residents!) this evening(Sunday) and there are powerlines down behind their building. He and the other driver decided to park outside when they brought the trucks back, in front of the store, instead of trying to navigate around them in the dark.

Damage around Longview was extensive, obviously not like what it south of us but I bet there is at least one tree down in every neighborhood. You can go to the Longview News-Journal's photo gallery for pictures from after the storm or their Seeya page(look for ChrisG's pics). At one point there were 170,000 people in our area without power. I have friends less than 3 miles from me who will be without it for 3 more days.

(Mark helping clear limbs at his parents house)

(gorgeous velvety mushroom)

(tree that fell across the back of Mark's parents home)

(same tree, diffent shot)

(more natural beauty)

(fallen tree branch)

Mark's uncle and his wife are staying with Mark's parents until it is safe to go home. They heard today that they have as much as 3 feet of water in their home. We are having all of them over for dinner tomorrow and to watch football.

(more limbs, different pile)

(monkey grass off the front porch)

(Amy in front of limb pile)

(the dangerous thing, dead copperhead)

(another of the beautiful things)

(tree across the path to the back pasture, held up by a tree on the other side)


angeljoy said...

So glad you guys are o.k. didn't realize you were in Tx.

Good pics, I especially love the nature shots.. Glad the snake's dead!

A Slice of the Pie said...

I'm glad you are all safe.


Susan Ramey Cleveland said...

Thank God you and your family are safe. What an experience that must have been!

Sarah and Jack said...

Even by the time Ike roared through up here, he left quite a disaster in his wake. Floods everywhere, several people dead, and lots of damage. And we in the middle of the US! Nasty storm that was.

Chickenbells said...

I'm so sorry this all happened, but I am very thankful that you are OK...and like you said, a wonderful learning experience. I'm also sad for the snake, I know it's a dangerous one, but it's still sad to see. I always worry about the animals and how scared they must be when this should check the link in my sidebar from A French Twist and see what they got for a little while after their part of the's really too cute!