Growing up in a small town in Southern New Jersey

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Yikes, Ike!

Yikes, Ike! This is a picture of the building next to us. I went out (had to use the stairs as the elevator doesn't work when there is no power) and checked out our building -- because we live upstairs I was concerned with roof singles being gone and getting rain in the house. I didn't see any pulled up shingles on the front of our home, but the back, I couldn't get out to see, as my knee kept popping out.
If I could have gotten my cart out of the garage, I would have ridden around and checked out more damage. But what I did see was enough -- there were roof shingles all over the place. Tree limbs (we still have small trees), leaves, garbage -- one of the garbage bins got sucked over. What a mess! So what is written below is what I was thinking when the storm first started.
Here goes!

We are in the middle of a wind storm as a result of Ike. No rain, though, just wind, and lots of it.

I was sitting on my porch and the doors of glass – the sliders which allow us to have air circulate are bowing in the middle with each gust and I’m just praying they don’t break. I finally pushed the heavy table against one of the doors so I won’t bow as much, then I piled all the chairs together and pushed them against another door so it won’t bow.

The wind is coming straight out of the South, and the roofs that face that way are losing shingles all over the place. One building is down to the bare wood on the roof. I think we’re okay, but how would I know until it rains and I start having dripping through my ceiling.

I’m writing on the computer – we’re without electricity, and I’m recording this in a Word document.

Since we have no electricity I have no wireless. Funny, it doesn’t work when the electricity is off! Anyway, I see people pushing against the wind, getting in lose plants and flags, many of which have blown around the neighborhood. I guess I should go down and check out my pots and see if they’re still where I put them near the front door. I don’t want anyone to get hit by a flying flower pot. (I did, they hadn't moved an inch -- that's on the north side of the building).

I did notice that several hanging ferns are no longer hanging. They are rolling around on the ground.

This morning some men wisely stacked all the swimming pool furniture into one corner and turned all the tables upside down and removed all the umbrellas. The pool looks like someone denuded a tree and just dumped all the leaves into it.

Oops, there go three more roof tiles from across the street. I pray they don’t land on someone’s windshield on Route 27. That would be bad.

Okay, I’m signing off now and I’ll post this when our power comes back on. We also only have cell phone service, which is probably dead because I haven’t had it charging for a week. Nice being isolated – NOT!

We got electricity back around 10 p.m. and were settling in with candles -- we both decided around 7 o'clock to go to bed. But I woke up around 9 and was hungry, so I made us sandwiches. I cleared out the ice dumpster, in which the ice had melted just enough to become one solid block. So, we have no ice and won't for at least 12 hours. Oh, well.
Because I didn't want to drink the water, and not knowing whether there were any boil water orders -- which I couldn't do anyway without electricity -- I opted to drink 1/2 gallon of cranberry juice. Man, I hate that stuff. That's the story for another BLOG, though.
And to the two people I was able to talk with before I lost ALL telephone service, including my cell phone, we're okay. The wind has died down to a gentle breeze of about 30 mph, which seems tame compared to the registered 85 mph winds that hit our area.
All schools are closed tomorrow and there are orders to stay off the roads unless it's an emergency, which I think going to the doctor and getting some pain relief is. If I get stopped, I'll just head over to the already over-extended ER at the local hospital. Who knows? Dr. Caoili may not even have power tomorrow and won't be open anyway.
As of right now 11:30 p.m., September 14, there are still 750,000 people in our area without electricity. We have underground lines, so that may be why we're back on, because they fix transformers first, then they get to the downed wires. I don't know, but maybe that's why we're back online with power. I notice, thought, that over on Cyndi's hill, and beyond, they'll still blacked out. Duke Energy says it could be three days before all power is back on. There are still some downtown (Cincinnati) buildings without power.
Sad note: There was a fire at Findlay Market today which, because of the winds, took off and destroy several of the Market's buildings. I don't know which "shops" were destroyed at this point, just that there was large fire at Findlay -- and the TV pictures showed total losses in several buildings.
Well, I think I will sign off for now.

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