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Posts tagged ‘Hurricane Harvey’

Shoveling Sand

view20of20the20river-mSomehow January always flies by along with all of my good intentions. With the federal government in disarray we chose to do our First Day of the Year hike in Village Creek State Park. One of the trails had been re-opened after Harvey with extensive work by the rangers. We marveled at the amount of sand the river had deposited…one ranger told us that sand covered the trees and vegetation..almost like snow!

We learned that work days were planned for volunteers to come in and assist with getting the park back into visitor readiness. On the first Saturday of February, a group of about ten folks arrived with work gloves and ready to work.

sand20in20the20air-mOur job was to smooth out one trail and to reclaim two picnic sites. The flooding had deposited 6 to 12 inches of lovely white…and HEAVY sand on two of the sites. We shoveled and raked and hauled sand for three hours….I did some shoveling and raking–but spent more time taking photos until I filled up my card.working20the20trails-m

The two rangers worked along with us–putting as much if not more effort into the project. We offered all sorts of suggestions of needed equipment and wished TxDOT would repair the bridge soon–easier and safer for needed equipment to drive over a bridge that doesn’t have a huge hole underneath..but the state moves slowly.

But then, the quiet and stillness of just a few people shuffling through the sand and no engines, just the wind whispering in the tree tops, the hawk soaring overhead….maybe it is just fine that the bridge is low on their to-do list.acorns20and20acorn20caps-m

A few more photos of the day are here: https://sylviaweirphotos.smugmug.com/Texas/Village-Creek-State-Park/i-gvZs9Ns/A

Tadpoles in the Toilet

My preparations for any hurricane begin in May with the purchase of bottled water, filling up gas cans for lawn mowing, buying non-perishable food stuffs, filling up fuel tank on vehicle, and getting all my prescriptions filled. This is much like preparing for a blizzard in my native Wisconsin but here in Texas we do not have to worry about being cold.

No-one expected Harvey to turn into a sub-tropical storm. We were all prepared for a lot of rain but not 50 inches. We were supposed to be on the ‘clean’ side but Harvey bounced back into the Gulf and became subtropical wich meant our side was the ‘dirty’ side….sheets of water in bands for days. Rain started on Thursday, continued on Friday and then Saturday afternoon became very heavy. Due to the rain I was in my house until Wednesday afternoon–and then in a slicker jacket and snake boots getting soaked.

Toby and Dora–our two rescue puppies and Border collie mixes were very confused–not sure if it was day or night and neither one wanting to get their little tushies wet while taking care of business.

I had power, water, and phone/internet service (amazing for the internet as it is spotty on good days). I don’t have cable so not a lot of updates with the exception of Facebook entries.

The roads in and out of Beaumont are closed–so I truly cannot go anywhere and due to some of the neighbors I have here–reluctant to leave due to the looting probability.

I started hearing helicopters flying overhead very low on Wednesday when it was still raining heavily. Yesterday I heard them all day long–very low over my house—one of our hospitals is being evacuated.

I also woke up to no water in the taps, diminishing selections of food in my pantry, and desperately no more dog treats. Dog Food but no treats for two very spoiled dogs. Fortunately they think pond water is great drinking water especially since it is now full of tadpoles which they can chase about while I fill a bucket to flush my toilets.

Water and supplies are supposed to be on their way but the lines are very long and there is no estimate as to when we will have water again. The Neches River has not crested yet and the estimate thus far is feet above record–not inches. And that is where we draw our water from–those pumps are under water and the wells in the northern part of town are under water and failed as well.

Fortunately, the drainage system put in has worked really well–I had water to the curb several times but the parts of the neighborhood that always flood badly did not.

I don’t have photos of flooding but you can see how close the helicopters are flying over my house–and it is a steady procession from 6 in the morning until 8 at night.

For now, I am safe and dry and with some supplies—hauling water from the garden pond to flush the toilet is not my favorite task—and I wonder how long it takes tadpoles to become toads.

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here is my house..looks like a mansion doesn’t it–two stories with ten foot ceilings on both floors.

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All the lovebugs have been washed on the grill of my truck–it was covered!

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this is looking west toward one of the hospitals. We are in the flight path of Medivac flights but they are rarely this low. Lots of helicopters flying overhead–Coast Guard, National Guard and probably many others–I don’t know types of helicopters well enough to identify all but I could have stood outside all day long taking photos of them.

More photos of helicopters if you are intrigued by them here: https://sylviaweirphotos.smugmug.com/HouseinBeaumont/Hurricane-Harvey/i-sJ67m9j/A