FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23RD
2:09 PM – Windows taped up. Clouds are rolling in and the wind has picked up as well. Roomie bans me from watching the news or the Weather Channel for at least two hours.
2:38 PM – Neighbor across the way sees his hanging plants being thrown around by the wind and decides (FINALLY) that it might be a good idea to take them inside!
5:34 PM – Rain finally accompanies wind.
5:40 PM – Rain stops. We pop Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in the DVD player to help keep me from watching the news.
7:10 PM – The sun is setting and we can see a wall of clouds headed toward us.
7:17 PM – Beautiful periwinkle/pink sunset.
8:01 PM – Rain again, but the air is still. Wait, rain…wind…no rain… it’s still… no, wait, it’s windy…
8:31 PM – Roomie terminates a moth who has taken shelter in our house from the storm. She says we are not an inter-species shelter and we are definitely not a moth-approved shelter. Poor Mothie.
8:45 PM – Decide I need protein and eat eggs for dinner. Find it is possible to have an entire conversation with words that include the letters or sounds of “egg.” For example, “eggs-actly,” “eggs-ponentially,” “eggs-aggeration,” and “eggs-cuse.” I finally “bEGGed” for it all to stop. We were so silly.
11:11 PM – Nap. We have about three hours until the bulk of the storm hits.
11:25 PM – First big downpour of the evening, but nothing to write home about.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24
1:11 AM – Power finally gives out. The wind is howling and blowing rain around, but we are all right so far. Will sleep for a while.
3 something AM – The wind gusts are so intense, the wall of my bedroom shakes and I sit up in bed wondering what the hello is going on.
8:27 AM – Still no power. Across the street, they have power… apparently they are on a different grid. Lucky them. Over 500,000 people in Houston are without power, so we aren’t alone.
For breakfast: butterscotch pudding and a cup of diet coke for the caffeine fix needed to survive without power for the coffee pot.
Crack the doors open for a little breeze.
10:42 AM – Went out to survey the damage — mostly downed trees, branches, and leaves. Still no power, but a lady across the street who lives in #38 said we could come over any time if we needed. Very happy indeed that we live in Texas during this sort of event in our lives.
NOON – REFRIGERATOR EVACUATION After nearly 12 hours without power, we decide it’s time to relocate what food we can to the two soft coolers we have. Many items in the freezer are sacrificed to the dumpster, but we save things like milk, yogurt, mayo, lunch meat, and some frozen veggies.
6:00 PM – the sun comes out in the early afternoon, heating our home to a very muggy temp. Roomie has heat exhaustion and doesn’t feel well at all. Mostly, I’m just bored.
6:01 PM – Lights flicker on. A loud cheer is raised outside by those who stayed or came back only to find their home without power. Lights immediately flicker off. Loud, unprintable screams float across the complex. I decide to take a shower to try and cool off.
7:55 PM – It’s too dark to read by candle light downstairs and the mosquitoes are getting hungry, so we shut the doors and retreat upstairs and light more candles. I rip the plastic off my windows and open them (mosquitoes don’t fly that high). A beautiful, almost cloudless sunset follows.
8:00 PM – Roomie lays down in the hallway where it is cooler for her. She is very hot and I’m concerned that an emergency room trip may be in order. She then announces that she shouldn’t be that hot and sweaty without sex but we virgins can’t find a loophole in the whole sex before marriage clause, not even one that would allow for sex privileges during natural disasters. She is disappointed, naturally, but assures me we don’t have to go to the emergency room as she is still sweating.
8:45 PM – Roomie goes out to sleep in the car. It is at least 80 degrees downstairs which means it’s at least 90+ upstairs. Her strategy is to turn on the a/c, cool off the car, sleep until the heat wakes her up, turn on the car again, and repeat the process as needed.
I am getting a cool breeze through my window, so I stay indoors.
Several times in the last hour, the transformer begins to buzz and then shuts off and the people setting up places to sleep on their balonies are trying to cheer on and coax the transformer to work for us.
9:15 PM – POWER!! Everybody outdoors shouts and I stick my head out my window and “yee-ha!” with the rest. Roomie comes back indoors and we wait for the house and fridge to cool down so we can relocate what food we have left back to the fridge.
MIDNIGHT – Food has been relocated to the fridge. Must cook all meat soon as it has thawed too much to refreeze. Freezer has 2 bags of ice and one package of bagels left in it. Roomie goes to bed. I finally go to bed after checking the news and posting on some message boards that we are okay.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25
Mayor says, “if you aren’t essential, please don’t go to work,” so, I am off work until Wednesday morning. Roomie apparently is essential. She will go to work.
Decide to use this time to continue moving stuff around my room. In that process find a place where some water dripped down my windowsill to the floor, but it is insignificant. It’s the part of the window where the satellite cable feeds through and I didn’t get it quite sealed enough underneath.
Cleaned off back porch, relocated plants back outside, vacuumed all the leaves out of the house, and tried to get the house looking/feeling as normal as possible.
AND BY THE WAY, I am so proud of Roomie for the bungee cord/satellite dish idea. It did not move one centimeter. I will post more of her hurricane survival tips later. So many of them were good… and I want to keep them for later!
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26
Today, will continue to clean my room and restore Hurricane Central back to the kitchen table. Roomie will go to work soon. I may work in a nap. All told, I will have had a week’s “vacation” and by the time I go back to work, my sleep patterns should be nice and messed up.
Thanking God, as always, that we are safe and sound in Houston…. and I’m on news restrictions again because I am saddened by pictures of Port Arthur and Cameron and Beaumont… that would have been Galveston and Houston if Rita had not shifted at the last minute. So the tv is on a radio station and now, I must keep with the program and continue arranging and cleaning.