Friday, September 16, 2011

Goodnight Irene

Since arriving in the Carolina's we've battened down the hatches to prepare for some good named storms, but, luckily have not had to face their wrath.  Last year's Earl was like a fart in the wind. It barely rained.  This year however, we were on target to get Hurricane Irene as a category three directly on top of us.  The stores were stocking tons of bread and water.  The isles usually full of camping equipment were stripped bare of propane came stoves, coolers, and kerosene lamps.  The flash lights were sold out and so was the milk.  The calm before the storm was seen only in the air as the energy from all the people was electric.  Some worried, others shrugging the whole storm off. It was kinda fun to wait and see what would transpire.

Of course my final assignment for University was due on Monday and Irene was expected on Friday night...she didn't leave until late Saturday night.  So I had to rush to get the house ready and get my assignment handed in before we lost power for who knows how long!   We contemplated right up until Friday afternoon as to whether we should drive to the next town over to stay at Steve's mom's house and then we decided not to.  All our neighbours were staying put, our house has been standing here since 1910 boasting original floors and most original windows, we felt we wanted to stay and ride out the storm.  So we put the bed down in the yoga studio and camped out in there for the next 24 hours. 

Here comes Irene.

Saturday morning at 7:35 AM we lost our power and it was out until 5:30PM. Apparently our house is on the main grid that facilitates the third street pump house and it HAD to be operational to clear out the flooding. Lucky us.  We sat in the kitchen watching the trees bend with each wind gust.  I tried to take video and pictures but they just don't do any justice to the 100 mile an hour winds.   Inside we listened to trees crashing and we kept Finley entertained by reading books, playing with Play -Doh and painting.  
Finley wanted to paint the BIG BAD WOLF and Swiper the Fox.
 It must have been due to all the wind huffing and puffing our tree limbs down!
Without power we began to eat the contents of the cream FIRST.
The next morning we awoke to pristine Carolina blue sky, no humidity and the largest mosquitoes the size of horses and as hungry as an out of work actor at a True Blood audition....and we began to assess our damage.  The car lost it's side mirror, we lost power line to the garage outbuilding, we had an entire yard filled with tree limbs and a terrible leak in the bathroom. Otherwise we were fine. Our neighbours a few block over were evacuated and they suffered flooding. There is nothing as destructive as flood water.  Everything had to be thrown out, bleached and rebuilt.  Most of our neighbours were awaiting the insurance company to asses. 

Down town the roof blew off a prominent historic building and all the contents of the apartment and stores were destroyed. The roof landed a block away in a parking lot. How fortunate for that! 

This is the day after Irene. 
The Pecan limbs lined our property and our neighbours to both sides.
Steve had to go to work - our neighbours were awesome to come and help us out.
Finley sang "Clean up, Clean  up, Everybody Cleeeeeaaaaaaan up!"  
While we all worked - she was very helpful.

Finley Walking Up Sidewalk
ALL these limbs are from OUR two Pecan trees!
We thought we had some trees down and then we took a drive and saw this....

So many hundred year old trees just toppled, onto houses, power lines, streets, barns, boats and cars. 
The hurricane stayed on top of Beaufort County for almost 12 hours.  The locals say it's the longest hurricane in their history to stand on top of them.  Of course there were tornado's wreaking havoc on the outsides of the hurricane too...but these trees down are all Irene. 

This is our neighbours house.  She wanted to take this tree down but the historic society wouldn't allow it.Irene didn't ask permission.  I wonder what the historic society thinks now?
Luckily it fell right into a small space in the driveway and did not even take out the stone fence.

The storm surge raised the river ELEVEN FEET.  These boats didn't have a chance.

This my friends is the EXACT dock 
we used to keep our sailboat on.

1 comment:

lucky said...

scary!!!! so glad you all are ok.