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We would like to invite everyone in the area on the 28th of August to

The 5th Annual

Katrina was a Big Ole Beotch!
BBQ and Get together.

From Adventures

Satuday the 28th of August 2010
Gumbo, Drinks, and Munchies starting at noon.
BBQ firing up around 4pm.
Burgers, Dogs, etc.
Doors closing when the last person leaves.
Come help us celebrate the good and amazing things you never heard of on the news.

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Last night the Robert Down Elementary School here in Pacific Grove did their poetry night. This year it was titled “The Pink Sun Sings to the Night.”

Molly and Nora both read their poetry and had a lot of fun. One of the poems read that really stood out was a poem read by a 4th grader titled “Hurricane Katrina.”

From what I understand, the family moved here from Louisiana last year. They tried to stick it out after the Storm but finally moved here. It reiterates why I’m glad we decided to bail after only 4 months.

Hurricane Katrina

I am hurricane Katrina. I take lives away
every time my powerful winds
of water hit the earth. I cause destruction.
People run scared every time they see me coming.
I knock down trees, flood your streets.
I leave you crying for me to stop my fury.
I am not afraid. I suck you into my horrible waves
until you stop fighting me. I destroy all that is in my path.
I will make you cry and scream, but you can’t fight me.
I am too powerful. My waves will smother you
and my winds will drag you to my soul.
I show no mercy for anything.
I will never stop my strong winds and waves
that make you suffer. I will come for you, for I am hurricane Katrina.

M. G.
Grade 4.

This guy just won’t give up. He’s written another “the human race is evil” book.

Al Gore's new book

A few things to note.

No Baja California, it’s under water.

Nice big Typhoon in the Pacific.

No Ice in the Arctic.

America is a wasteland desert.

I’m at a loss for words.

This morning we got a late start because I slept through my alarm. I don’t even remember it going off actually. Anyhow, I got Molly and Nora to school on time, barely, but Megan ended up 45 minutes late.

Because Megan was late due to my sleeping through the alarm she now has an hours detention. If on the other hand I had lied and said she was late due to  a headache/cold/flu, etc she wouldn’t have gotten detention. So, guess what will happen the next time?

It’s a stupid policy and I would have raised a stink if I didn’t have so much else going on right now.

So, lesson learned. Pacific Grove High School, you pencil pushing, check box minded, idiots. I will flat out lie to you from now on. Congratulations. You’re teaching our children a great lesson. It is better to lie and not be punished than to tell the truth and be punished.

A very good friend of mine just went through Hurricane Ike. This was the man who jumped on an airplane as Katrina hit the coast, flew from San Diego to Texas. Rented a truck, drove it to Costco, filled it with supplies and then drove into the heart of hell to help us out. Now he’s in the thick of it himself. I just was forwarded this email message. Wish I could be there to help you this time.

All, thanks for the offers of help and concern.

My family and I safely made it through Ike, without any significant damage to home. We don’t have power, (went out about 6pm Friday afternoon), and are now up on a generator (thanks boss for pushing the correct buttons!) and won’t have it from anywhere from one to several weeks. If you’ve seen the news, the area is short on fuel, but as power is restored, the availability increases, same with grocery stores. I had stocked up on ice, supplies, food, etc, after learning a few lessons from Katrina and Rita.

Cell phones still don’t work, but for some reason text messaging does. However, I’m text’ing impaired and its a slow process to text anything more than a short message. The good news is, the wireless broadband network came back today. There are multiple utility lines laying on the ground in my back yard, I’ve thought about tapping into them, but having second thoughts (however, wife has encouraged me to go for it.. right after she asked me to up my policy payout).

Also, the weather has cooled off, making it bearable to live without air conditioning.. (Kirt, A/C is that thing that makes the air colder inside the house, which I know is a strange concept )

Steve and Jay, a sincere thanks for the offer for relief, I think I’ll make it, unless you’re driving a tanker truck loaded with fuel. In that case, don’t stop, because it’ll get emptied enroute as you reach the hurricane zone. Its great to know you have folks looking out for you! Boss, thanks again for making the magic happen that put the lights back on, through IBM’s emergency assistance for employees, my family and I appreciate the relief it brings.

I made it through unscathed, but as the news reports, there are so many who can’t say the same. At this time, there are still 1.5M+ folks that are without power. Others without water, food, other basic essentials, inhabitable homes, or basic shelter. I feel blessed to have been spared injury and property damage, and humbled to see how my neighbors handle the losses with steadfast determination.

Again, to all who were checking up on me, Thank you so much,

Gary

It’s good to hear you’re safe.

Here is a copy of a post I put up just before the 1st anniversary of Katrina. It’s hard to believe that we’re coming up on 3 years. Wow. Three years since the world got tossed, turned, washed, and wasted. Since it’s that time again I thought I would start it off with a visit to past impressions.

A friend of mine put up an article on her blog Crabby’s Kitchen, about her first impressions on coming home after Katrina.  That made me think that maybe I would put up the following notes. This was something I wrote only a few months after moving away from Mississippi. It’s just some thoughts and experiences I had as Katrina started coming our way. Anyhow, here it is.

Where we road out Katrina

Where we road out Katrina

My family and I ended up riding out Hurricane Katrina at Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The eye of the storm went right over us. The family actually went out and stood in the eye of the worst disaster to ever hit our county. We rode it out, and we survived the worst that the bloody thing could throw at us. At the time we had no idea of the damage that was happening around us. We were lucky. To tell the truth we were very, very lucky, and at the time had no idea of just how lucky. Our house survived with only minor damage. Our family made it through the storm alive, heck, even the dog and cat survived. We were lucky. There were so many around us that weren’t.

My wife, three daughters (twin 6 year olds and a 10 year old) and I all lived in Diamondhead Mississippi. We were there 1 year and 1 day before Katrina came and said hello. I worked for IBM at the Naval Oceanographic Office, NAVO, which is located on Stennis Space Center, MS. Which also happened to end up as FEMA’s command and control center after the storm. We watched the storm coming our way with the same disregard/worry that we did all the other storms that year. They always seemed to miss us or weaken to the point of not being a danger just before landfall. Thus we didn’t evacuate. That and we were between paychecks and light on money. Heck, to tell it like it was, we were broke. The closest family was in Montana, not really an option. So we waited and watched and worried.

On Sunday morning things were looking pretty grim. Lucky for us NAVO was considered a refuge of last resort for staff and family. That and I was the only IBM specialist to stick around, I’m something of a supercomputing specialist.  As such, as soon as I walked in the door with my family I was considered part of the ride out crew, and thus considered essential personnel. (NAVO is a very large computer center for Navy research.) We had a safe place to stay only a short distance from home. Not only were we allowed in, I was immediately put to work. We started opening offices up, conference rooms, hallways. Putting  people in every nook and cranny available. Not even the stairwells were safe from being used. There were children of all ages, elderly, wives, husbands, you name it. We made beds out of blankets, air mattresses, whatever. We all, and I mean all, believed that we would be there for the night and maybe for part of the next day. It looked rough. But, so did Ivan, Dennis, Cindy, and several other storms before this.

Across the street the NASA building was filling up with staff, family, and people from the surrounding area. That building was about 3 times the size of ours with the cafeteria in it. Since our building was a Navy building with some extremely large computer systems in it, we had tighter security and thus we only had staff, family of staff,  and Navy personnel, and still we were tight on room.

The day wore on, the winds kept picking up. News from southern Louisiana was bad. The day wore on. Things started to get tense. I took my laptop, a monitor, some chairs, some boxes, speakers stolen from my friend Pat’s desk,  and set up the first and only “Stennis Theater” at the end of a hallway for the kids. We had tons of DVD’s. Movie after movie was played to keep the kids entertained. We had popcorn and snacks for the kids.

As the night progressed the winds kept getting stronger and stronger. Some slept. Others tossed and turned. Some spent the whole night in front of the small tv that had been set up in the hallway. Watching and waiting. I was lucky, I was busy. I had things to take my mind off what was happening outside, but even I kept stopping and would stare at the tv. Waiting, wondering, not really believing. Not many people slept that night, as the winds slowly built up.

It was a long night. For the rest of my life I will remember the quiet of the hallways. People laying in the semi dark. The flickering of the TV down at the end of the hall. The quiet whispers. The way everything was hushed, tense, with an underlying layer of scared. The way people would look to me because I was busy, had a badge, kept meeting with the powers that be, and acted like I knew what the hell I was up to. People kept asking me what was up, what did I know, what had I heard. Even though, just like everyone else, I had no idea, no concept of what was, and about to happen to the world around us. Later, this would haunt my dreams.

Can you feel it? Can you possibly imagine what that’s like? The nervous anticipation, the dark crowded hallways, the news showing us the wrath of mother nature headed our way. Knowing that it’s headed straight for you and you can do nothing more, just wait for it to hit. Now remember, the worst hasn’t even begun yet. The storm is coming, but isn’t yet upon us, and we had no idea of how bad it would get.

I was one of the lucky ones. We survived. We moved out of Mississippi in December and moved to Pacific Grove. My family is alive and with me here. We all made it, and yet one of my twins has been having problems, nightmares, anger, etc.  And then here I am, the rational one, I see the Navy do an awards ceremony, giving out all these “thanks you”, medals, and what all, to folks that supported the Katrina effort. But were NEVER there! I was so irrationally angry that I had to walk away. I couldn’t speak I was so pissed off. The only thing going through my head was “I didn’t see a single sorry ONE of you there!!” How DARE you!! I know this is nothing more than a stupid reaction. But I can’t stop myself. I know that over time things won’t be so sensitive. But right now I can’t help it.

Katrina  kicked a lot of us in the teeth. Some a lot worse than others. There are days that I’m amazed I even get out of bed. Everyday that goes by it gets a little more and more like a dream that happened to someone else.

Hey,

I finally had a chance to take a couple of pictures of our new Cray X2. The new vector unit was attached to HECToR, our Cray XT4. So, I guess this means we’re now technically a Cray XT5h system. What a bunch of hokey names. The X2 was originally called the “Black Widow”. Which was a cool name.

The way the room is laid out it’s really hard to get a good picture, but here goes.

X2_small

Notice the pretty blue lights on the front? They don’t move, they are just pretty blue lights.

X2_attached_small

Does anyone but me notice a resemblance to Dr. Who’s Daleks?

Dr. Who Dalek

A good friend of mine has written an article in the newspaper about her experiences with Hurricane Katrina. I’m going to link to a local copy of it here. It’s a very good read. As I go through it I can picture everything, I see it in my memories.

Here it is.

 A good site to visit is also her blog site. Crabby’s Kitchen.

 It’s a good article C. Congratulations for the good work.

 

Well,

Saturday is fast approaching. There have been more and more “specials” on TV about Hurricane Katrina and it’s effects. Some of them little better than bald face lies and political manipulation. Yes Spike Lee, I’m referring the that piece of bullshit you call a documentary. Lying bastard. Gee, does my opinion show?

Anyhow, back to good things. The party is ON! Blue tarps will be on the roof, FEMA on the neighbors trailer, BBQ fired up and beer on ice. I’m sure people driving by will be wondering what in the world is going on. They’ll just have to stop by to fine out.

 The First Annual Katrina Survivors party. Or Katrina the Beotch, or Club Med Katrina, or “Fill in cool name here” party is rarin to Go!

We watched a late night program on the weather channel last night about Hurricane Katrina. It was one of those programs where they go and show how they predicted this could happen. (Funny how many people can do that after it happens.)

Anyhow, it was actually a fairly good program. Not too much bull crud. It’s funny how watching something like that 9 months and half a country away can still make it so I don’t sleep at night. I’m wooped today, didn’t sleep well at all last night. On the program they were showing what the area was like today. Still all tore up beyond belief. I picture all my old co-workers and friends down there dealing with it on a day to day basis. It seems so surreal that we went through it and now are living such a normal life so far away. I have flashes of the downed power lines as I rode my bike across them, dodging the tree branches and debree in the process. I remember the heat, the smells, how everything was a dull brown. The looks on peoples faces.

 Ya. I remember.

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