Monday, September 3, 2012

Hurricane Isaac

We thought we were prepared for this hurricane. We thought it couldn't possibly do too much harm. It was only a Cat 1 we assured ourselves as we decided to shelter in place, riding out the storm at home, instead of evacuating. We had boarded up the back windows and stocked up on non-perishable food, water, and batteries. We'd be fine! And then Isaac decided to take his time, stall over the area, pound us with wind and rain, and move ever so slowly away.

It was 4:00PM on Tuesday when the lights went out. I was editing photos on the computer and dinner was cooking in the crockpot. Obviously I never thought we'd lose power so soon. The storm wasn't supposed to hit until the wee hours of the morning. But the wind had picked up and caused a wire to come out of the fuse on the pole outside our house. 7 families were now without power. This number would increase exponentially through the night until most of the metropolitan area of New Orleans was in the dark. Over 600,000 households would lose power in south Louisiana.

Here's what initially caused our outage:


We finished cooking dinner on the burner of our propane-fueled BBQ pit, then tried to entertain ourselves with games by candlelight. Here we are playing Chicken Foot dominoes, one of Kevin's favorites. It was going to be a long, long night.


Since the wind was blowing at the back of the house, we realized we could sit out on the front porch and be sheltered from the rain. We stood outside most of the night listening to Isaac's howling and watching transformers blow, their eerie blue-green sparks lighting up the distant skies. Every once in a while, the sound of the raging winds would scare me in, but a little later, I'd be back outside. Like watching a train wreck, I couldn't look away. Besides, there was nothing else to do in the dark, hot house but listen to the battery-powered radio give blow by blows of what I could witness myself.
We just had to wait out the storm.

Just before dawn, we could see one of our neighbors in the next block waving a flashlight around. A minute later, he was in his car shining headlights on his house. In the half-light of early morn, we could just make out what was concerning him. The huge oak tree in front of his house had toppled over.

A couple of days later, he would be standing outside watching a crew with a crane remove the tree from his roof.


Meanwhile, we had other worries. The rain was forecast to be several more inches and the streets were already flooding.


Although it continued to rain, we were never in a true deluge, and the water in the street went down after Brendan went outside with a rake to clear the storm drains of the branches and leaves that had fallen during the night.

From the back porch, we see that another neighbor's tree had split, but the branch just grazed the house.


Down the block however, a huge oak had crashed through the second story of another home causing significant damage. Only the horses seem unaffected.


Isaac's wind had certainly wreaked havoc. Most of the city was now in the dark and a dusk to dawn curfew was in place. Intersections were particularly dangerous.


And thus began our 123 hours without power.

20 comments:

soapHOUSEmama said...

Oh my goodness! I am so glad you are ok - stay safe!!!

Glinda said...

I'm so glad your family is safe and you didn't have to much damage. Also I just sent a friend request to you on goodreads.

Nancy Thomas said...

So happy you guys survived fairly unscathed. Having no power, especially no air conditioning is not much fun though.

Mary Jo Rhoda said...

How scary!!!
Glad you were all ok.
I am so sorry you were without power that long :(

scrappymo! said...

Your poor neighbours who had the tree damage to their homes!

I am sorry you had to endure the outages...not much fun in the heat and storm.

You seem like you did your best to be prepared and to try and have some fun (if that is possible).

Bless you all.

Margie H said...

Very scary!! SO GLAD you all were OK...the power outage was not so great. Prayers to all those who lost homes.

Michelle McClure said...

It sounds so scary, hope your household is up and running again.

Mary Pat Siehl said...

oh wow- this all seems so scary. i am glad you and your family are all fine!

Tammy said...

So glad your family is OK. It all sounds so familiar as I have been through my share of hurricanes too. Summer is just not the best time to be without power, is it? I don't have back up power so I always lost the contents of my fridge/freezer after 3 days without power. But everyone is safe and sound and that's what really matters. Hope the cleanup goes smoothly and that things go back to normal soon!

Lisa Rukin Swift said...

I'm so glad to hear you are safe. I was wondering how you and your family were faring.

Barbara said...

how scarey. I'm so glad everyone's OK.
Visiting from Two Peas.

April Michelle said...

I remember when IKE hit us here in Texas, it was crazy. I'm glad everyone is safe. Now is the worst part the clean up.

laura said...

So glad you and your family are all good. I was in Charlotte for Hugo. What a mess. We lived in a cul-de-sac and we all bbq'd together our thawing food for a big feast...we all got terribly ill and never figured out exactly whose food did it.

Sharla said...

Oh my goodness, I'm glad you are safe, how scary to be in the middle of that and realize how devastating mother nature can be. The pictures really bring home the reality of what happens in weather that bad.

Holly* said...

omg! glad yall are ok! i hope the surrounding damage is repair quick and painlessly!

Fleursbydesign said...

That's a long time with no power, glad you stayed safe through the storm

Erica said...

Wow! I can't imagine. So glad you're safe.

Susan Stringfellow said...

Scary photos but I love the one of Kevin. So glad you didn't have to wait any longer for power. It's just too hot

Tracy said...

I love a storm, as long as no one or property is hurt.
This was scary. Glad you and your family are fine.

Alyssa said...

How scary! Yikes. Take care.