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Showing posts from October, 2016

Buh Bye, Matthew!

Matthew has not completely left the building but he has packed his bags and is certainly on his way.  I've stopped listening to the news since there are too many widely divergent forecasts.  I know that while it is still stormy, the sky is brighter than it has been in more than 24 hours.

I lost power for a total of less than five minutes.  Thank you Duke Energy for the underground lines and good infrastructure.  Most of my friends lost power for hours.  One still has no power and based on previous experience, likely won't have it back in the near future.  I don't think she has such nice things to say about Duke Energy.

There is minor damage in my yard.  One panel in the fence is hanging by a thread but a couple of nails will fix that.  A few palm fronds are down which is no big deal.  I have a 10-12 foot Bird of Paradise that took a beating.  I think it will make it but I may have to trim it back by half.  My pool is looking decidedly pond-like but that will just take some c…

Horror in Haiti and Florida Update

I'm listening to the radio and watching the squalls of wind and rain that come and go.  They just announced that the death toll is at 478 now.  And more than 50,000 people are in immediate need of water, food and shelter.  Having lived on a small island in the South Pacific, my heart goes out to these people.  Even if help is on the way, logistically it takes time.  The news about Haiti puts our situation in Florida into perspective.  Thank God it was not as devastating here.

 I just came back in from fooling with the pump to lower the pool for the fourth time.  My "rain gauge" was under water again.  Since we're anticipating even heavier rains as the storm moves away from us, it looks like this will be an on-going process today.  In case you're worried about my attire, given that the sun is up now, I wore clothes.  Nothing fancy but I now have a designated "pool lowering, who cares if I get soaked" outfit.  It's a little number I had custom made in …

Hurricane Matthew - What Comes Next?

As I go through what appears to be the worst of the storm, I'm contemplating what comes next.  The good news is that I still have power and internet and unless there's a major change, should continue to have them.  The bad news is I fear what comes next.

Rain.  I assume I'll be heading out into the storm to lower the pool at least once more today, probably twice.  And, even though my pool guy dumped in a lot more chemicals this week, the pool is dealing with a lot of water and likely won't be quite clear for a few days.

Weeds.  I've let the weeds go a bit lately.  Cooler, dryer weather is coming and I'd rather be out yanking weeds then.  But with all this rain?  Those suckers are going to look like Sequoias in a heartbeat.

Ice Cream.  As everyone knows, during a hurricane calories do not count.  The storm is over, the diet is back on.  And, since I didn't lose power I have zero excuse to go after the ice cream.

Cleaning.  Because I have power, I can vacuum.  No…

Matthew Has Arrived

I have stellar news - Matthew's bark was much worse than his bite, at least so far.  Thankfully, he stayed a bit further to the east than anticipated and also, the winds decreased a bit.  The main problem I have now is that I didn't get much sleep since I was up in the middle of the night to lower the pool.  If a bit of sleep is all I lose from this storm I will be a very happy camper.

At 7:00 a.m., we have light rain continuing and winds of 49 MPH.  The wind is strong but not scary and not anticipated to get much worse throughout the day.  By 8:00 p.m. the bulk of the storm will be gone.  The biggest issue has been the rain.  According to the newscasters who are solely focusing on the storm, we've had about 3 inches of rain since the storm began.

I beg to differ.  I have my own personal rain gauge - how far the legs of the chair I threw in the pool stick out of the water.  When it started, the right leg had 3 inches over water.  It was 2 inches under water when I lowered it…

Matthew - Go Away!

I woke up at 1:17 a.m. on Friday, October 7, 2016 to the sound of my ceiling fan.  Not to the sound of wind and rain that I was expecting.  Ah, wouldn't it be wonderful if Fox news and others had been absolutely wrong and there was no hurricane barreling our way.  I decided to get up and check the pool level and I was glad I did since it was only an inch or two from overflowing. 

I grabbed my trusty new flashlight and headed out to start the process of pumping water out of the pool.  Happily, while the water level in the pool had risen by several inches, the water level on my patio had diminished by as many.  Last night when I stepped outside my screened pool enclosure it was into ankle deep water.  In the wee hours, it was barely an inch deep.  A testament to the efficiency of the sandy Florida soil that it can absorb so much water so quickly.  I suspect there are giant sink holes forming as I type.  Hurricanes and sink holes.  Just two reasons why there are still people living in…

I Want to Break Up With You, Matthew

I live in Central Florida, so theoretically, hurricanes aren't a big threat.  I've experienced four major hurricanes but this is the first since 2005.  And according to the news media, this will be the biggest, by far.

To let you share in the fun, I thought I'd document the process as I experience it.

The Build Up - preparations and media

On Monday, there was mention in the media that a hurricane was heading our way.  Early on Tuesday morning I checked several national news sources as well as the Orlando Sentinel.  I found no mention of the hurricane.  A few hours later it was front page news.  Media coverage quickly ratcheted up to nonstop coverage of the coming mayhem.

At 7:00 a.m. on Wednesday, I headed to Walmart to get bottled water, a new flashlight and a few grocery items.  At that point, the media was projecting the hurricane hitting on Friday.  When I arrived, the parking lot at Walmart was jammed.  When I walked in there was a man wheeling a pallet of water toward th…