Sunday, August 28, 2005


... and the waves? Ah, no. Not that cool.
I just thought I should send out a notice to folks who
might worry about us letting everyone know what we're
planning on doing.

As of the midnight predictions, it looks like New Orleans
is gonna get plowed by hurricane Katrina.

Although at this time the computer models suggest that it
might not hit us directly, most scenarios place us within
or uncomfortably close to the hurricane's eyewall. That's
where you really don't want to be.

The storm spins counter-clockwise, and the worst weather is
on the right-hand side, where the winds are spinning up
from the south and carrying rain.

Things will be better if the storm goes east of us, because
you want to be on the west side of a hurricane. We were on
the west side of Dennis, and the day was absolutely lovely
at our house when it hit Mississippi.

Doesn't look like we'll get as lucky this time, so we're
bugging-out for the first time since we've lived here.

East or West, you don't want to be within sixty miles of a
hurricane center. And this looks to be a BIG one.

My great-uncle lives just north of Pensacola, Florida,
which got severely damaged by several storms over the past
couple of years, but looks safe for this one. They've got
the room and have generously offered it to us, and we're
taking them up on the offer!

We'll be leaving about 4-5 AM Sunday, headed for Milton,

It's normally a 3.5 hour drive, but we're planning for two
to three times this length, just in case. If traffic is
just lovely, then we'll get there between 8 and 9 in the
morning, which is the earliest I'd like to wake up Jimmy
and Darlene on a Sunday morning...

One problem is that the "contraflow" evacuation system is
in effect, meaning that most of the interstates leading out
of the area have both sides of traffic headed outward. This
does affect us, as we ordinarlily would have taken I-10
East, but that's not possible, so we're taking State Rt. 90
into Mississippi, and hooking up with I-10 later.

Not a problem, and actually traffic will probably be
lighter for us going this route! If the interstates become
weird along our route, we can actually take Route 90 almost
all the way there.

We're all packed up, gassed up, and I've been on MapQuest
printing out detailed maps of our route.

Our main reason for leaving is the loss of electricity
which is just assumed in any tropical system.

Every tropical system which has passed by us has killed out

New Orleans just loves it's live oak trees, which drape
dramatically across the streets... and fall dramatically
across the power lines during storms.

In Cincinnati there were harsh laws about how close trees
were allowed to get to power lines... and we rarely lost
power there. But, no, not here... trees equal tourism...

The last time during Dennis we were without power for over
a day and a half.

In this weather, with the heat indexes being over 100, we
don't want to be sitting here for several days like that.
New Orleans in August is just barely tolerable even with

Our house probably will not flood, as we're almost next to
the Mississippi river levy and one of the higher points of
the city. I don't even think we're below sea level, like
much of the middle of the city. Also, our house is over a
century old, and sits up on yard-high brick pylons.
Flooding, we're not worried about.

Wish us luck!

Hope for the best for New Orleans, as possible storm paths
are the "worst case" paths for this town. Paths which drive
water into Lake Pontchartrain and over the levys and
flooding the town. And the pumps are clogged by debris and
can't work...

Of course, it's really a stupid place to put a city.
Everyone knows this, but it's been too much trouble to move
elsewhere... we all know that it's just a matter of time
until a big storm returns us to the swamp from whence we

More later. I'll send notice and update when we're safe in Florida.


Post a Comment

<< Home