Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Our new favorite saying is, "We dodged a bullet!" said enthusiastically

The storm has passed. It wasn't too bad. Not here anyway, although it looks like Santa Rosa Island and Navarre Beach got it pretty bad. It only caused minor inconveniences for us. It was a category 4 at landfall and by the time it made it's way here, about 200 miles from the coast, it was a tropical storm. Music to our collective ears. That's from about 145 mph winds to about 70 mph. And A LOT less damage. The thing is that you never know how much they will actually slow down. It could have slowed to only a category 3. That would have been serious.

It started getting pretty windy late Sunday afternoon and around 6 pm we lost power. It didn't come back until 10:30 Monday morning. That sucked. It felt like a sauna. We went to sleep at 9 pm because there was nothing to do and it was miserable. And scary. The wind peeled up part of the roof over the porch which began flapping in the wind and hitting the top of the porch. It made the wind sound a lot worse than it was. What sucked even more was that everyone else nearby seemed to have power except us and a few other people. That's what happened last year after hurricane Ivan. But we got it back faster this time. After Ivan, we were without power that night, the next day and the next morning.

Nothing really happened at the restaurant. The power never went out there, but down the street a tree fell on the power lines and they didn't have power until Monday night. We got lucky with that. We were afraid we'd have to throw out a lot of food. The letters on our blinking arrow sign got blown around a little bit. But that's all.

Montgomery is the stopping point for most people fleeing hurricanes from Mobile to Panama City. All the hotels here and in the surrounding area were full. All day Monday, I-65 South was bumper to bumper with people going back home. Several people were 30 minutes to an hour late to work at the restaurant. It only got worse later in the day. By the afternoon, the interstate was a parking lot. People got out of their cars and started walking around. Think REM's "Everybody Hurts" video but for probably 50 to 100 miles or more. At least they have something to go home to.


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