I just saw the most recent Rita projections saying it will still be a
Cat 1 by the time it comes over Dallas. It still seems a bit early,
but I don't think I've ever thought about a hurricane this far inland.
I was supposed to go to Houston with my wife this weekend. That got
cancelled in a hurry....
I'm sure someone from Florida probably thinks I'm being a weany, right?
Strange thing is we interviewed some architects from New Orleans today
who had fled to Dallas, and they're wondering what the 'F' is going on.
These things seem to be following them.
So, water, batteries, beer?
I know Kris and Adam are in Houston, are you guys getting the hell
Sorry, just a little Hurricane scattershooting.....
I'm in Houston. There's a mandatory evacuation for areas South and East
of Loop 610 due to storm surge. I'm inside loop 610, and as far as I
know the evacuation for me is not mandatory.
Still undecided as to whether I'm going to leave or not. I've paid a
ridiculous amount for a plane ticket from Houston to Boston, leaving at
10:40 AM tomorrow. I'm going to wake up at 4:00 AM tomorrow and decide
then if I want to battle traffic to get to the airport or if I want to
battle mother nature and stay put. I'm leaning towards the latter now.
My house is not in the 100 year flood plain; nor the 500 year flood
plain. And although I didn't live here then I'm told it didn't flood
during Tropical Storm Allison in 2001 (when over 5 days Houston got
nearly 30" of rainfall).
No problem. I'll say it's on my mind constantly right now.
I don't know what to do. I called the "property management company" (we
rent this house) and they're not doing squat about trying to secure any of
the properties, such as boarding up the windows. To add insult to injury,
they told me I'd have to fix any damage I caused such as scrrew holes or
Seems kind of stupid to me.
I was considering getting a heck of a lot of contact "paper", the clear
plastic stuff, and putting it onto all the wondows just to reduce potential
I've never been in this type of situation. I did get a heck of a lot of
canned stuff and have stocked up on water. The stores are out but I'm
taking empty water juge and diet-soda bottles and will fill them with
filtered water plus a drop of bleach, I also have a fridge crammed full of
Gatorade, diet soda, water, and so on; also got chicken broth and canned
tomatoes and so on. A pile of the tuna in "envelopes", the waer=packed
light (less salt than the oil-packed).
I've been watching the news but all they talk about is Galveston. Not one
little peep about any recommendations for Houstononians. Excpet that
they're moving people out of the Astrodome because it has a glass roof.
It'd be nice if there was something resembling *information*. Maybe the
storm will weaken by the time it gets out here? I have no idea.
I live West of Houston center, just inside the 8 loop. This area did not
flood at all during Allison. Nobody here seems to be doing anything at all
re: boarding-up or so on.
The stores are pretty much cleaned out, and people are getting cranky, but
aside from that, there is more complacency than I'd expected. Again, tho',
I've never been through this kind of a situation so I'm not sure what to
do. We're waiting to hear more details on the news. Figuring we'll load
up the bird and a few things if we have to get out (take my hard drive, and
so on), go down the block and pop up onto the 8 and go....well, somewhere.
That's it for now...
This is post-storm commentary, but...if it was my own house, and I lived in
a hurricane zone, there'd be no screw hole sbecause I'd've had a moer
permanent solution installed. In any house price, we always consider the
cost of the improvements we deem necessary, and changes we'd like to make.
We'd considered a house here, but made our bid based upon the price plus
the cost of replacing the old 60's vintage cheapjunk windows (the type was
cheapo even back then). The faults revealed by the inspection made it too
expensive and the bid was withdrawn.
But the same would hold true of new construction. If I have to be screwing
plywood over the wondows (thereby weakening the wood and opening it up ti
faster degredation), IMO that is unacceptable in somethig I'd own. So, if
it was my house, nope, I would *not* be having to screw plywood over the
Well if I ever did have a psychotic breakdown and actually rented out a
property I owned, first thing is that I'd make sure the "property
management company" actually did something resembling maintenence and
But it's moot because I've lived in too many apartments 'n' townhouses, and
heard too many horror stories about "tenants from hell", and the way that
the rules are stacked against owners, to want to bother with renting, and
especially long-distance renting. I'd rather put my $$ into liquid
So it's unlikely the situation would come up. And even if it did, I'd
handle it differently from tohe get-go.
IMO that's the responsibility of the owners and/or managers.
In any event, what I ended up doing was getting vinyl "contact
paper"/shelf-liner with repositionable adhesive, and putting it over all
the windows, the idea merely being to minimize potential glass shards in my
own stuff. Most of which we put into the closets anyway - took all
pictures off the wall, padded and packed the breakables into bins in the
closets, and so on.
All of which emphasized the fact that we - well, OK, *I* - still have too
Well, I like it when I actually end up being clever <L!> - we did most of
that - just couldn't clean the guns as we haven't yet gotten any, due to
Interestingly, I'd put several gallons of water into the one freezer and
set the thing to high, so it was all solid before we left and turned off
the power as evacuees were instructed (we ended up bugging out after all -
went to San Antonio, which I found to be definitely worth future visits)
(BTW there were alnot no vehicles at all on the road Friday AM, at least,
not heading due West). Anyhoo, I'd inadvertently left a steak in the
freezer - when we got back about 72 hrs later, it was still cold and the
water jugs were still about half frozen.
Since we're in the North-West corner of Houston (about 1 block East of the
8 and a few blocks south of the 10), we didn't flood, still had power (we
use Reliant, not Centerpoint or the other cheaper providers), only effect
was scattered leaves and small branches - IOW, the yard is "messy". So we
got off easy. OTOH, we researched the flood and past-damage zones and
selected the "safest" - of course one also pays for the priviledge. So
there ya go.
OTOH, I don't think it's wise to tempt fate, so I don't regret going away
for the weekend.
This is just a general description of what we did last year during both
Try to imagine being without power for several days. Then work your way
My wife and I did not get a generator, and had little ice. We had no
power for 5 days the first time, and no running water for 30 hours or
We filled both bathtubs with water. We purchased many gallons of
bottled water. We consumed whatever was in the freezer or refrigerator
that was perishable, then set the refrigerator setting low and the
freezer setting high.
We stuck two gallon jugs of the water in the freezer.
We got a bunch of candles and a couple of flashlights, a battery radio
and a battery color TV from Radio Shack.
We avoided canned soups, but got canned vegetables in water and canned
fruits, Spam, tuna, salmon, corned beef and such. We avoided chips and
got dried fruits as well.
We kept towels handy at all the doors and windows just in case of water
intrusion. We had pails on hand for roof leaks. I backed up the
computer on disc and had a mental checklist of what papers, folders,
items to grab in case we had to scram (particularly from tornadoes).
After the storm passed we used the water in the bathtub to flush the
toilet, since we were without running water for a day.
We kept the house dark and opened the garage door and sliding glass
door in the back for some cross ventilation. We took it real easy,
hanging out listening to the radio with minimal clothing. The cool tile
floor came in handy to cool off on. It was very muggy and hot after the
The frozen water was good for a few days to stay cool.
I washed stamps from envelopes, a lengthy, time consuming activity for
several days. We used the car to charge the cellphone and to freshen up
on A/C in the late afternoon. Phones were out for a few days, including
cellphones, because when the power goes out at your nearest telephone
central office, you loose cell phone service as well.
We ate by candlelight at night to avoid consuming the batteries too
I figured we would be out of power for a week tops, being on a road
where there are 4 schools, and in fact we got power back in 5 days. If
it had been more, we probably would have gone somewhere, to a hotel or
to my mom or dad who had power in 24 hours.
One thing to keep in mind; we are 5-6 miles from the coast, but we got
winds from all directions, the fiercest coming from the west (south
side of the eyewall in both cases and therefore circling over the state
before hitting us). In the case for those far inland in Texas, the
winds and bands will be traversing Louisiana and gulf coast before
reaching cities like Dallas, so that may take some oomph out of the
winds. But I wouldn't be surprised too see 70-80 mph winds even 500
miles inland, especially if the storm expands. The biggest concern
should be tornado spawnings and sudden gusts for those inland. For
those close to shore, flooding and gusts.
Fortunately we had no flooding, but sprang a small roof leak.
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