Friday, September 19, 2008

Don't Hit Me, Ike! Love, Tina

That was my favorite message to Hurricane Ike of all the ones I saw spray painted on plywood-boarded windows. Just in case you don't get it, it refers to the rough and tumble marriage of Ike and Tina Turner of "Proud Mary" fame. Ike was fond of caressing Tina's cheek with his fist. Truly, Hurricane Ike's attack on coastal Texas was also a case of domestic violence.

May its victims find comfort, hope, and healing.

We suffered no lasting damage and are almost done cleaning up the branches and leaves. As is the case with vast numbers of other Houston-area residents, we have no power. Centerpoint is working frantically to restore Houston proper; Entergy is working just as hard in the rural areas like ours. Astonishingly, I heard one man complaining in a TV interview after the first day without electricity and demanding to know when his power would be turned back on.

Our camper is parked in the driveway. We cook, shower, and sleep in it, and its generator also powers our big freezer in the garage, this computer, and the TV in the house. We are truly blessed, and I have found many things to laugh about this week. I remember disinctly lying in bed in our camper on Saturday night after the storm and giggling. Emma, on the couch, giggled in response. I have no clue now what tickled us. However, we were alive, well, and had air conditioning and a bursting pantry. Who wouldn't giggle?

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I grew up in Ft. Walton Beach, FL, so hurricanes are an important part of my childhood memories. Back then, we didn't evacuate and didn't know anyone who did. I guess 24/7 news coverage and the widespread use of credit cards have changed that. In fact, I don't remember any large scale evacuations until the 1980s, and I was shocked by it at the time. I don't think we even had bottled water when I was a child. We filled the bathtubs and big cooking pots, and that was that. We certainly didn't expect the federal government to come "help" us. That was a job for your insurance company. If you couldn't get insurance, that was a pretty good indicator that your property was risky and you might ought to reconsider buying it.

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Despite threats of flooding on Sunday morning after Ike, we drove to church in Dickinson. We had no problems getting there except for the Beltway 8 bridge being closed. It was an especially beautiful Mass. With no electricity, it was quiet and softly lit by the altar candles. A soothing breeze whispered through the side doors. As it was the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Father brought a relic of the true cross to the altar rail for us to kiss. Face to face with true suffering and true sacrifice, I was awed. Forget Centerpoint. Forget Entergy. Here was the true Power for which we all should yearn.

1 comment:

Cay G. said...

Glad you're all safe and well, Wendy.

I've been checking in for an update.

Stay cool. :)