What a weekend! Hurricane Irma decided to stop in for a visit. She wasn’t the best house guest and left behind quite a mess. Please pardon my lack of posting on Sunday as I tried to meet her demands.
Mike and I were among the lucky ones.
We stayed home with all of the necessary preparations (water, pantry food, radio, batteries, flashlights, etc.) and of course, Netflix. We figured we would watch Netflix as long as we had power; afterwards I had books and card games ready to go. Thankfully, we never needed it because we maintained power (minus some flickering of lights) throughout the storm. I had turned our walk in closet to an emergency shelter. We did have a couple of tornado warnings which is certainly my fear during such an intense hurricane.
We spent a lot of time watching The Walking Dead and charging all devices until we decided to call it a night. Of course, between the howling wind and pelting rain, it wasn’t a great night for sleeping. I slept on and off for an hour at a time, but every time I woke up, I was too curious that I had to go peek out all the windows. With such a strong storm, we could see the world light up whenever a transformer blew and could feel the movement of our windows and doors with each powerful gust of wind.
Our pups did well, although they did not enjoy going out before bed when the wind was reaching it’s peak. Otherwise, they stayed close and alert, but calm. Of course, little miss Irma decided to change her course in the middle of the night and head right towards us (rude!), but again we found ourselves lucky.
During the storm, I worried about debris hitting our windows and about our pool overflowing. I worried about the big oak tree in the front yard and the losing the screen enclosure. I worried about animals that had been left behind or lost. I worried about animals at the parks and dedicated ride out crews who stayed with them.
What kind of damage are we dealing with in the aftermath?
Honestly, not too much here. Storms can be scary as a new homeowner. We had many branches to pick up, lost a few roof shingles, we have a leaning fence and one loose structure on the screen. I consider ourselves extremely lucky. As I write this, millions are still without power. Some are without water. Some are flooded. Some cannot return home. Some are trapped inside their homes. Some lost their homes. Some lost their lives. Hurricane Irma was a beast, and she certainly wrecked havoc here in Florida.
Is there a silver lining?
Devastation like this tends to bring communities together; strangers become friends. I have seen families out walking the neighborhood. I have heard of power-less neighborhoods cooking together. I have heard of friends allowing anyone into their home to shower or charge devices. I have seen businesses give water away and open their doors. I have seen volunteers assist in several shelters. It seems to me, unfortunate that it sometimes takes tragedy to find companionship. This sense of responsibility to help each other should be ongoing. Especially considering the current climate of our country. Hate isn’t good for anyone. We are all human and we all have basic needs. Like I said last week, if we all tried to help one another, what a better world we would inhabit.
It’s been a rough week. Certainly harder for some. Luckily, despite the damages, everyone I know is safe. Everything lost can ultimately be rebuilt or restored. As my aunt returned home from her mandatory evacuation, she saw many damages to her property. However, her now-barren rose bush had a single budding rose after being assaulted by Hurricane Irma. A sign that new life and new hope is coming. As tragic as this storm might have been, it will get better.
I hope that anyone reading this is safe from the storm. For those that lost everything, you are in my thoughts and I am hoping for speedy recoveries. We are all stronger than Irma.
“We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone.”
– Ronald Reagan