Friday, September 12, 2008

Hurricane Ike Thoughts

I am sitting on my beloved back porch, listening to my little fountain, and enjoying a day off since my university closed campus until Monday if the earliest due to the approaching storm. Many of our students commute and of course that will be impossible between now and Sunday. The word is that we will re-open Monday, and I hope that is true because it will mean that things are going pretty well. Also, several of our campus buildings are already filling up with evacuees. My town is a major stopping point for folks heading away from harm's way during hurricane threats. As I contemplate what the upcoming hours may bring, I find myself with some random thoughts:
  • Last night on the news, a reporter stopped a woman who was strolling down the nearly deserted beach in Galveston. She had a little one in a stroller and two tots in tow. He said a bit incredulously, "Ma'am, why are you still here? You should be leaving! Aren't you concerned about the storm?" She replied, "Oh no, we aren't worried. The Lord is going to push this storm further on up the coast. He will take care of us. We will be fine." The reporter said "But what about your children? Aren't you worried about them?" Her reply was "Of course I am concerned for my children but we don't want to get out in all that traffic. If things are really bad tomorrow, we may leave then." This made me angry then and I am still thinking now about those little ones! I wish I knew that these folks left. By now I don't think they CAN get off the island. The bridges will be impassible soon if they are not already. It is OK to be an idiot in America, and we tend to prove this regularly. But the children have no say in this! I am having trouble getting them out of my mind.
  • I was on the road early yesterday morning for a doctor's appointment and came home up Interstate 45, a major evacuation route. Traffic was bumper to bumper but moving and orderly. It is clear that things are unfolding in a much more orderly fashion than they did in the wake of Hurricane Rita. It is heartening to see that people can and do learn from past mistakes! Now if we can also see this happen in the coming election, my whole world view will improve!
  • I am thinking very much about my students and former students, many of whom I know are displaced. My prayers are for them. I know that many suffered from Hurricane Rita, several losing homes and others with damage. Since SHSU LS Department has for years taught courses throughout South Texas, we have many folks to be thinking about.
  • As for me, I am selfishly thinking about power. If anything were to happen to me beyond some heavy rain and maybe winds knocking down limbs, etc., it will be power loss. My plan is to use this down time to write. But what if my power goes? I am keeping all three computers charged up...but what will I do if my gizmos all run down? I could be forced to pick up a pen and legal pad. Since I transitioned years ago from writing in longhand to writing online, I will have to readjust!

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