October 24, 2005
In deference to Hurricane Wilma, here's my stone-age blog: ink on paper. [All entries were written on paper from October 24 - November 8, and transcribed here November 8]
The hurricane is passing through as predicted. It's about 9:30 a.m. and the winds have been very strong since before dawn. Casualties so far:
(5 a.m.) the electricity went out
(8:00 a.m.) screens gone from the Florida room
The roof over the bedroom patio--it's just corrugated plastic--blew in and took some framing with it.
The orange tree blew over--it's leaning on the roof.
All the plants are severely battered--our neighbor's banana trees blew over early this morning.
Part of our front fence blew over.
No water pressure.
The wind is still out of the south, so it's the first half of the storm.
We are safe and dry inside our cinderblock house.
No phone (our phone needs electricity to work, but the neighbors say their regular phone doesn't work, either)
The second half of the storm took the roof off of our Florida room.
It's relatively calm now, and a lot of the men in the neighborhood have been out in the street, surveying the damage and comparing notes (Tocci says there are some women out there too--but I think mostly the women are staying inside like sensible people)
The water's back on! Yea! I have only the news from neighbors--brief reports: "worst hurricane in the history of Broward County," "two million FPL customers without power." I walked around the neighborhood, found a pay phone that worked, checked on my employment situation--apparently the buildings didn't blow away and I can report for my normal schedule tomorrow "to help with the recovery efforts."
Our cleanup at the house has gone as far as it can. Our pile of debris out front is respectably large--none of our neighbors has a bigger one, so we can't be accused of sloth or lack of neighborhood pride. I cleaned up the laundry room--the window broke when the roof came down. I put plastic over the window but it will blow out if we have any kind of wind. I cleaned the other patio too. The tree on the roof will have to wait until we can borrow a chain saw. Our neighbor, John, has one and he loves to use it so he'll probably be over before too long.