Hurricane Jeanne diary - part 1
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  1. #1

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    Default Hurricane Jeanne diary - part 1

    Sept. 27...

    Three weeks ago (Sept. 4th and 5th), Hurricane Frances ripped through our area. On Sept. 2nd we evacuated adn 13 hours later ended up in GA in a town that is a normal 5.5 hour drive from us. We returned home Sept. 7th to no electricity, no running water, and no telephone service. The telephone was restored on Sept. 9th after having been given a date of Oct. 5th and electricity was restored on Sept. 13th in the early evening. Part of an oak fell on our large shed and made it lean forward slightly, some pieces of our dock were missing, and the majority of our garden was wiped out, but that was the only damage we had aside from losing all the food in our fridge and freezer. We were trying to get back to 'normal' (whatever that is). Dh's work has been hugely affected. There is work to do, but people can't do anything until their insurance gives them an okay and they come to an agreement with the ins. companies on how much they will pay. He hasn't been getting any overtime and really hasn't even been getting in 8 hours a day for the entire 3 weeks.

    Now we've been hit by Hurricane Jeanne. I prepared on Sat., Sept. 25th by cooking up things like pancakes, muffins, and biscuits for us to have to eat because we were sure we would be without electricity again. After having eaten MRE's the last time, I was in no hurry to eat them again. They aren't bad, but we were eating a lot of stuff we normally don't and we felt awful. We felt the first affects (winds) in the early evening Saturday. We had all the windows and doors boarded up so we couldn't see what was happening at all. Our electricity blinked off a few times during the evening, but kept coming back on in anywhere from 1 second to about 30 seconds. We were staying glued to the news, flipping back and forth between all our local channels and the Weather Channel. Ds fell asleep about 8pm and we left him on the sofa in the living room with us. The winds picked up heavily adn we moved him in to sleep on the floor in the hall bath (our interior room "safe room") at 9:45pm. By 10:45pm I was starting to really get scared so I moved into the bathroom with him. I was very tired and tried to sleep (I've not been sleeping well since Hurricane Frances due to bad dreams and am just worn out physically and mentally). Sleep wasn't on the menu though. I had padded the tile floor as best I could, but it was still rock hard. The weather alert radio went off continually with flood watch alerts, tornado watch alerts, and tornado warning alerts. There was a tornado warning for our town at some point before midnight. We were joined by the middle dog, Ginger, at some point. She is afraid of the vacuum and thunderstorms, so this really had her freaked out.

    Dh continued to watch tv in the living room to keep track of the storm. Even this late in the evening, forecasters weren't sure where it would make landfall because it had not really made the northward turn they expected. The cable started going off every little bit, but would come right back on. At 12:05am Sun., Sept. 26th (just minutes after the hurricane made landfall near the same spot as Frances) we lost our electricity. Dh chose to stay in the hallway right outside the bathroom door with the other 2 dogs, Chloe and Charlie. Ginger joined them at some point during the night and Charlie came into the bathroom with ds and I for a while. I don't know how to describe the noise other than loud. Dh said it sounded like a train to him. Thankfully being in an interior room seemed to lessen it, but in the rest of the house the sound was terrifying. The toilet gurgled and bubbled all night (LOL) due to the vent in the roof. The weather alert radio continued to go off throughout the night. Ds slept quite well, but woke up a few times. He was scared and would snuggle with me and go right back to sleep. I dozed on and off throughout the night, but only had maybe an hour sleep total. Dh didn't sleep at all.

    We decided to venture outside around 7am Sunday morning and were not prepared for what was before us. All of our exterior doors have glass so we had them boarded up. The door going from the utility room onto the back porch only has the top half glass so that was the only portion we boarded. We crawled out underneath the plywood and our mouths dropped. We are on 1.47 acres and it was as if our house was sitting on a little island surrounded by the ocean. The news had been reporting we would receive 8 to 12 inches of rain, but it had to be much more to have created that type of flooding. Our water softener (part of a series of tanks on our back porch to purify our well water) had been ripped off the house. The lid was lying on the back porch. We went and opened the front door and peeked out underneath (it had about 18 inches of clearance at the bottom) and could see the tank portion floating in the water up by the road. Dh waded out and retrieved it and I made my way under the plywood to check out the front. Half the roof of our large shed had been ripped off. Some portions were still attached and still flapping in the wind (still had tropical storm force winds at this point since we were on the back side of the hurricane). The other portions were in the woods just beyond the fence. A few big tree limbs were down in various spots - some just cracked and still dangling from the trees. Most of the raised garden beds are flooded. I did have some corn, squash, and zucchini plants trying to hang on after Frances, but they are gone now. There was a tiny bit of thyme, sage, lemon balm, and coriander trying to survive after Frances and it's all gone. The only thing remaining are some watermelon plants and basil. We'll see how they survive over the coming days. Our lemon tree and orange tree are in the flood water as are the 4 hibiscus I planted. The back oak on the garage side of the house is starting to uproot completely and is leaning. If it does fall, it will take out our power, cable, and telephone lines that run from the transformer pole to our house.

  2. #2
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    Wow Kim - I would have been absolutely terrified.

    I'm so very thankful throughout it all, you remained safe.

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    Kim thanks for sharing your diary with us. Praying for you hon.

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