Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hurricane Irene

So I had intended to post last week about the hurricane, and I know it's old news at this point. But I thought I would bore you with it anyway.

The brunt of the hurricane hit us overnight. It was a wild night for sure. I am not generally a nervous person, so even when the reports suggested extreme winds and rain, I wasn't really worried. I was chatting with friends on Facebook, all of us keeping tabs on what we were all seeing in our areas. Around 10:30pm it got more serious when a tornado watch was issued, and then a tornado warning shortly after. I was truly afraid, as we have no warning system here. I thought about what I knew about tornadoes, which isn't much. I decided to move my children downstairs and have them sleep in the living room. I told the big kids very little, just that the storm was pretty heavy and I'd feel better if they were closer to me. TC never woke up and I just put him on a quilt on the floor.

The power went out just before midnight. My friend Keri texted me a while later, complaining that there were noisy helicopters keeping her awake. (We realized later that it was the sound of many generators running in the neighborhood.) I had a hard time sleeping with the threat of tornadoes and wind damage.
{The crick that runs through the bottom of our neighborhood. This is a shot of our friend's back yard. The water reached their back patio.}

In the morning church was of course cancelled, so we decided to get out of the house and drive around to see how bad the damage was. Surprisingly, we didn't see a ton of storm damage in trees or houses, but there was high water everywhere.
{The levee along the Delaware River. You can see water being pumped over in huge tubes. One is from the crick and the other is from the storm drain.}

We got high winds at the tail end of the hurricane that arrived in the afternoon. This was when a lot of people began losing power, as trees lost their footing in water-logged soil and came crashing down. Tom helped a neighbor clean up when a tree fell in his yard.

We are so thankful to have come through the storm with no damage. We lost a few things in the fridge and that was it. The number of homes without power in our state alone was over 300,000, let alone all the other states affected. Our power came back on after only 15 hours. We were relieved because ice was hard to find, as most places had sold out quickly. (We're in the process of researching & buying a generator for the future. We seem to lose power every summer with storms, and then every winter with snowstorms.)

We had an earthquake a week before the hurricane, and have since gotten deluged with rain from Tropical Storm Lee, which flooded much of our area. Our friends who avoided flooding with Irene have since been flooded with Lee. They had at least a foot of water in their house. All the houses along that street now have huge piles of ruined furniture and rolled-up carpet at the curb as they clean up.  I know that as Christians we are all thinking about what the Bible says about what it will be like in the last days. And truthfully, I cannot remember a single year of my life where we had so many natural disasters. The earthquake and tsunami in Japan were unprecedented. We had 'snowpocalypse', followed by a brutal tornado season,  the east coast earthquake, and then these hurricanes that have brought massive flooding and destruction.
{Our favorite park under water from Lee.}

It's all a painful reminder of the need to spread the Gospel before it's too late. We can't know when the end of days will come, but Jesus told us to be mindful, to keep watch, and to tell others about Him. Complacency sneaks up once the sun is shining, and I don't want to forget the big picture. A friend of mine accepted Jesus as her Savior this past weekend, and I have been grinning and praising Him about it for days. It also encourages me to keep talking to others about my faith, since no matter what the weather, we don't want to waste any of the time we are given.


KateO said...

wow. Is that Tyler state park?
Also, love that A is holding TC's hand, precious!

Shay said...

Tyler Park, yes!