September 15, 2008

Eisenhower or Turner? He Made A Mess!

We returned from our evacuation getaway yesterday. It was a bit surreal as we got closer and closer to Houston. We passed up Centerville, which is the halfway point between Houston and Dallas. We zoomed right past it without stopping, not really thinking that the problems would be so far north. As we passed, we noticed that a bunch of cars were backed up on the exit ramp going north. We continued on to Madisonville where we stopped in order to top off our tank, knowing that Houston was a wreck of no power and no fuel. Madisonville, a full hour and a half north of Houston had no power and no fuel. As we continued into Huntsville, more and more trees were downed, more billboards had been knocked over.

As we approached Huntsville, stop and go traffic began. We started getting itchy. Worried that this stop and go business would continue all the way into Houston. While we were perfectly fine on gas if traffic moved at normal speeds, we were not going to be able to go 10 mph and make it. We pulled out Tom Tom and tried to find some out of the way gas stations within the center of Huntsville. Unfortunately, there was no power anywhere we drove. The 2 gas stations that we did see with fuel, had a major police presence as they attempted to maintain order for the 50+ cars attempting to fuel up. The police were only allowing a car into the gas station as another left. The backup from the gas station is what caused the stop and go traffic on the freeway. Once we passed Huntsville, without filling up, we really didn’t have any problems with traffic. We turned off the AC and started to trail a semi, in order to draft off of him in an attempt to save all the fuel we could.

We made it into Houston, not too far behind the standard time of 4 ½ hours. The damage that began in Huntsville continued all along the freeways into Houston. Trees, signs, light poles, everything just torn up. Once in Houston proper, we saw some feeder roads that were flooded out. Very few gas stations were open, very very very few places had power. Those gas stations that were open, had ridiculously long lines and a heavy police presence.

Our house is not damaged, none of the houses within the very short distance we have traveled are damaged, just lots and lots of dead trees and downed power lines. We don't have power, but um, yeah...who does...

1.5 million are without power currently, down from 2.1 million. Gas lines are insane and have police out in force. The stores that are able to open do not have much on the shelves as they cannot restock.

I am quite proud of my city. I continue my love affair with Bill White. I continue to despise Sheila Jackson Lee. Ed Emmett seems to be a cool cat although I cannot understand why judges are constantly helping out with disasters. Is that really their expertise?

Houston is recovering. People are helping their neighbors, we are doing ok here. Say a prayer for those that were stupid enough to stay in their homes in Galveston, Crystal Beach, Surfside, etc. They did not heed the warnings. Did not listen and I hope they survived.

I think though that overall we are doing pretty well. I love this town.


Kaytabug said...

That's some crazy shit yo!
I think of this storm as having a likeness to Turner.

Hope ya'll get back on the grid soon!

Sauntering Soul said...

I'm so glad your home is okay. But more importantly, I'm glad you and Not Craig are okay. I can't imagine what it's like to see your city blown apart like that.

Believe it or not, gas stations here in Atlanta have been out of gas too since Saturday. I was driving home from the paint studio Friday night around 11:15 p.m. and there were lines out into the street and I couldn't figure out what was going on. The next day I stopped at several gas stations and then I realized why there were lines the night before. I have less than a quarter tank right now and am hoping I find some this evening. Luckily, I have Hot Brazilian's car right now while he's out of the country and it has between a quarter and half of a tank full.

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