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Rita and me (in Houston)

 
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Dave
Lucky 700


Joined: 11 Nov 2004
Posts: 727
Location: Houston, Texas

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 5:01 pm    Post subject: Rita and me (in Houston) Reply with quote

Hi gang,

Always wondered about the US Postal Service Motto... Were they really serious about delivering the mail when humanly possible? Well, we didn't have mail service today. I suppose rain, sleet, snow and dark of night is manageable...but it doesn't apply to approaching hurricanes Smile

This is a really odd experience for me. I grew up dodging tornados which isn't exactly a walk in the park. But I think tornados are less stressful. You don't have to sit around for days knowing its coming like when a hurricane comes. Weird. Other than an above average day of heat we have had clear skies for most of the day. Then a couple of hours ago the outer cloud bands of Rita began presenting themselves. If I didn't know that Rita was out there I wouldn't take a moments notice. "Oh, look we might get some rain tonight...and we need it." But not this time. This is a completely surreal experience.

They estimate 1.5 million people have been able to get out of harms way. Primarily those in the most vulnerable areas near the coast. Unfortunately, Houston metro is nearly 6 million. There's just no way to move that many people in such a short period of time (even days). Interestingly enough our fearless leader, Mayor Bill White, finally admitted that we have a few "glitches" in our emergency plan. So many people are running out of gas and becoming stranded on the side of the road he has now advised that no more people try to leave...calling the evacuation routes (and I quote) "death traps." Now that inspires hope in a panicked populace! I guess it brings new meaning to the notion of being "left behind" doesn't it?

This note doesn't really go anywhere in particular. I just grew tired of hearing the same news over and over and over of gloom, doom and death predictions. (Reporters just love to sensationalize) Just thought I would peck out a few random thoughts as a diversion.

Dave (elevation 56 feet -- 40 miles north of Galveston)
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Spacegypsy
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 6:46 pm    Post subject: Hanging In Reply with quote

Hey Dave -

Hang in there, and let us all know you're OK when Rita's passed, OK?

SG
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Bailey
4 Large


Joined: 04 Jun 2005
Posts: 4336
Location: Lake San Marcos... north of Connie, northwest of the Best.

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With a tornado you can at least take cover in a basement, but with a hurricane, I guess the worst case would be a basement full of water. I don't think that 40 mile buffer between the coast and you is going to have any effect on what's coming. So... are you deciding to ride it out? You didn't state that you were. I've only been to Houston once... 56 feet above sea level doesn't sound too comforting. I'll be keeping "you all" in my prayers. I just hope that your elevation is high enough that I don't see you on CNN waving at a helo from your roof. :( Take care of yourself.
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Dave
Lucky 700


Joined: 11 Nov 2004
Posts: 727
Location: Houston, Texas

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bailey wrote:
So... are you deciding to ride it out? You didn't state that you were. I've only been to Houston once... 56 feet above sea level doesn't sound too comforting. I'll be keeping "you all" in my prayers. I just hope that your elevation is high enough that I don't see you on CNN waving at a helo from your roof. :( Take care of yourself.


Thanks,

Sorry I wasn't very clear. Just sitting around with too much time on my hands while waiting for the big show so I kinda rambled.

I had planned to get out yesterday evening/this morning (I insisted my wife and my 92 year old mother in law leave early Wednesday... and they made it safely to McKinney TX (north of Dallas) before the mother of all traffic jams came along. Even though I had filled the tank before gasoline became a very rare commodity, I knew it wasn't possible to get far enough without running out in the middle of nowhere (aka the distance between Houston and Dallas) with traffic moving at a blistering 1 mile per hour.

So, here I am.

I've already done everything that its possible to do to ride out the storm. Buttoned up things around the house...which really only means getting everything that can be blown through a window secured or inside the garage. No plywood or duct tape within 200 miles of here.

Storm Central for the next few days (?) will be an interior hallway where I have staged food, water, candles, blankets, sleeeping bag etc. Since our home is total electric things will be a little primitive for a week or so...so I also have a propane camp stove to get a hot meal (of some mystery configuration) every now and then.

This part of town (40 miles inland) is safe from the strom surge. However, I will have to deal with heavy rain (1-2 feet) and 100+ mph winds...and the occasional tornado if the weather gurus know what they are talking about.

Thanks for the prayers and good wishes. I'll try to post along the way if communication is possible...or when I dig out.

Dave
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allensco
Flight Attendant


Joined: 30 Jul 2005
Posts: 821
Location: Alabama, USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck Dave and stay safe! I live about 90 miles from the Florida gulf coast in south central Alabama. I spent 3 nites in a radio station (where I was employed at the time) when Hurricane Opal came through in 1995. It wasn't very comfortable although we had emergency power (generator). Our transmitter site did not have a generator at the time so we were off the air for two of those days. Nuthin' to do but sit around and look at each other!

All the best!
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Frank F
Fat, Old, and Sassy


Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 4337
Location: Park City, Utah

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The very best wishes to you and yours. Like the others I will be thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers and thoughts for the next few days.

IF there is anything we can do from this side of everything... do not hesitate to call or contact or .... yell - very loud.

Frank F
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SoundsGreat-Elaine Singer
King's Row


Joined: 30 Dec 2004
Posts: 1053
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, you take care. I'll keep you in my thoughts.
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Elaine
The Youthful Mature Voice (Emeritus)
Senectitude is not for the faint of heart.
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donrandall
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, it's probably late enough now that you won't see this for a week or so after it's all over - - but know that I am thinkin' of ya, and hoping for the best. Fasten your seatbelt, it's gonna be a bumpy ride!
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Deirdre
Czarina Emeritus


Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 12933
Location: East Jesus, Maine

PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2005 3:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wish I could loan you my comic books to keep you company.

Best of the best luck, my friend.
We're all thinking of ya.
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lisaloo
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2005 4:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is unbelievable -- please take care of yourself!

Lisa
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Andy
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2005 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, I rode out my share of typhoons in the western Pacific. Brace yourself for more than fifteen hours of pure hell. I rode out a super typhoon on Guam...170 mph of sustained winds with gusts to 200. Despite the fact that people there view typhoons as "visits" and most structures are made of thick concrete, even the utility polls, that one did a tremendous amount of damage. And since people are surrounded by water there's no place to evacuate. We hunkered down. God, I haven't tapped into the TexDot cameras yet, but if you can find a way to get the hell out, without getting stuck in the throng of traffic, do so! Wichita Falls is six hours, maybe 9 by the back roads. I'll keep a light on.

Drew
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donrandall
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2005 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave - you okay?
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Spacegypsy
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2005 6:32 am    Post subject: Yay! Reply with quote

Hi Dave - I saw your post on the temporary board - so glad you're OK!
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