I’m getting a lot of emails and messages on Facebook and MySpace from TJB, CL, and TJL readers who are wondering if we’re okay and what happened to us before, during, and after hurricane Ike. I’m doing my best to answer them, but thought I’d post answers to the top five questions here.
1. Is Rex okay? (Tie: Is EZ okay?) Yes. Rex is fine. Although he was glued to my side throughout most of the hurricane, he was quite brave. In fact, he wasn’t shaking at all, so I think his need to be near me may have been his way of protecting me and making sure I was safe. Because I’m sure his main thought was I must protect the Giver of Pickles and Car Rides! As for EZ, I’m not sure she realized there was a hurricane. She spent the early hours of the hurricane in my apartment, and then around 2 AM when the winds started getting fierce and we worried my apartment might blow away, I ran across the backyard to bring her back to Becky’s house. We put her in one of the east wing guest suites (The Fran Lebowitz Suite, which has a sofa and hot plate.) where she slept through the rest of the night as if nothing out of the ordinary was going on.
2. Do you have power? We didn’t lose power until around 4:30 AM the night of the hurricane, and we were only without power for about 24 hours. CenterPoint Energy rules. Hopefully, the rest of the Houston metro area will be up and running as soon as possible. Our water and gas were never off. We’re quite lucky.
3. Any damage? Not really. I lost some shingles from the roof of my apartment, some small limbs came down from a few of the trees, and one tree in our front yard is split down the middle, but it didn’t fall. Nothing fell on the house or on my apartment. Again, we were very lucky.
4. Are you guys okay? (Tie: Do you need anything?) We’re fine! We had enough supplies to get us through, so, no, we don’t need anything. If you feel compelled to send food anywhere, check with the Red Cross or Second Harvest and see if they’re doing food drives for Galveston and Houston. I’m not caught up yet with everything that’s been going on, but I’m sure they could use your donations.
5. Why didn’t you evacuate? (Tie: What did you do while the power was out?) An order wasn’t given for a mandatory evacuation of Houston. The Compound has been standing since the 1940s, so we had an inkling it would be a safe haven. It was. Also, we had vivid memories of “evacuating” three years ago before hurricane Rita and what a ridiculous joke that turned out to be, so we decided to stay put. If reports had indicated that Ike was stronger than a category 3 storm and an evacuation order had been issued for Houston, we probably would’ve heeded it. While the power was out we mostly sat around and sweated a lot. (Poor Mark G. Harris. I feel bad he came to visit for this!) Rhonda and Lindsey came over, bringing some of their food with them, and ate with us. Then we sat around, talking and laughing, which is what we usually do, only this time we did it by candle light and without air conditioning. They’ve stayed with us since (In the Sylvia Plath suite), but are returning home today now that the power is back on in their home.
And that’s it for now, because I feel guilty for having power and internet access while the vast majority in Houston doesn’t.