Posting Mainly for Family and Friends – Irma pre-arrival report

     This is probably nearing the end of my having an Internet connection.  We are are ready as we can be at this point.  All it’s going to take is one limb on a power line nearby.  I suppose there is more that we could have done but time has run out.  For example we don’t have a generator.  I’m sure that we will lose electrical power and that means no water since we have a well.  We have a considerable amount of water stored for drinking, spit baths, and minimal toilet flushing.  We have a weather radio and an AM/FM radio both with battery backup.  We have storm protection on each window, and strong garage doors.  The 45 minutes or less it takes us to secure the storm shutters turned into 6 hours.  For a while I didn’t think I’d be able to make them secure at all.  I could not figure out the problem and was beginning to jury rig.  Then Terrie (brighter than me) realized that when we had the house painted earlier this year, the painters must have gotten their sealer into both the locking rods and the key locks.  Without them, the shutters would just flop around! I was strongly reminded that “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley” as Robert Burns reminds us in his poem “To A Mouse.” Gang aft a-gley = often go astray. That was yesterday for sure.  It took a lot of time and a lot of solvent to get things working!  I had been so full of pride and satisfaction for having the sense, in 2005, to invest in shutters (instead of other things I would have rather had) but those convenient, costly things were a lot of work this time.  We were exhausted.  I just took it for granted that it would be an easy job as usual.  Duhhhhhhhhh

     Chances are, after the storm has passed we will not know details about outcome and current conditions.  Those of you outside the influence of the hurricane will be hearing all kinds of reports with advice, etc. – but we probably won’t know what is going on.  That’s the way it was with Andrew.
     We are located near a little town in Florida called Holder – situated between Inverness and Dunnellon and not far from U.S. 41.  We are less than 4 miles from the Withlacoochee River which this moment is at 2.34′ above it’s low of zero and is expected to be in major flood stage at a predicted 11.5 feet by Wednesday.  I’m telling you this because it might makes the news.  Though rain water could be an issue for us we should not get water from the river cresting.  We are at about 60 feet above sea level and the river bank three miles away is at about 41 feet above sea level.
     Since we could be without electricity and an Internet connection for weeks – all I can say is that I’ll send out info as soon as I can.  When I am able I will probably continue these posting on this weblog because it’s so much faster for me than group e-mails.
     As a parent, you can understand my concern for my children.  My oldest daughter and her husband are in Lakeland.  Her daughter is also in Lakeland with her husband.  The next daughter is in Saint John’s south of Jacksonville with her son who is still in high school.  Her daughter is in New Hampshire.  Her oldest son is in Valdosta, Georgia.  My youngest daughter is in Lake City with her husband and her brother (my son of course) is in Crystal River with his wife.
God bless you all,

Tonie 

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