Monday, September 3, 2012


Sunday, the 26th:  Matthew Beben, John Petrullo and Travis Wain arrive; Charles back from Seattle.  Isaac slowly moves across Gulf.

Monday, the 27th:  Sunny day, Isaac slowly moving--tropical storm or category one hurricane?  John told his flight on Tuesday to Vancouver is cancelled.  Re-books for Monday night.  Gets to airport--that flight cancelled.  All flights Tuesday cancelled.  Re-books for Wednesday afternoon.  It never happens.

Tuesday, the 28th: Orientation for volunteers starts; Bob cooks dinner--lights go out at 7 PM   Storm hits hard and stagnates.  House shakes and rocks, storm window crashes to ground at 3 AM, siding stripped off, water comes in under closed window, over sill, on to floor.  Uh, oh.  Mop the floor--volunteers huddle in living room. 

Wednesday, 29th:  Storm abates, winds keep up--no power.  Matt and Travis cook jaqmbalaya on stove top.  Great with a bottle of merlot.

Thursday, 30th:  90 degrees plus--meeting on common prayer, Bob and volunteers go off for a tour in air conditioned van.  Back to read and sweat.  Charles pulls off a pot roast for dinner on top of stove thanks to ingenuity and old cast iron pot.

Friday, 31st:  Hot, hot and humid.  No power.  Search for breeze.  Clean up broken glass and some debris.  Bob does pulled pork sandwiches in that cast iron pot for dinner.  Rouse's our local grocery is open--deserve a medal.  People roaming streets looking for repair crews.  Much damage a few blocks away.  At 7 PM, power is restored.

Saturday, Sept 1:  Matt off to work for All Saints, a Methodist reconstruction group.  Rest hit stores, put stuff we brought in back outside.

Sunday, Sept 2:  Mass at St. Gabriel's at 10:30 AM--home, guests for dinner [more on this later]--problems with AC on third floor and in main part of house.  Volunteers tough it out.

Monday, Sept 3:  LABOR DAY  Matt off to All Saints again this morning--local Church celebrated feast of Pope St. Gregory the Great--sort of skipped Labor Day--true ROMAN Catholics.  Sigh!

Days without power, how does one while away the hours.  How about some doggerel?

Three days of Isaac now done,
It was named a category one,
Unending rain, wind, no sun
Not really very much fun.

The six of us did O.K.
Volunteers decided to stay,
The house shook, now let us pray,
The third floor ain’t blown away.

On Tuesday the power went out
We had none for three days, about,
The third floor was hottest no doubt
So the volunteers cool places did scout.

Ice chests for storage we’ve got,
Thank God the water stayed hot,
We had hot meals cooked in a pot,
Did we starve, certainly not!

Matthew, and Travis and John
Took it in stride, with aplomb
While the weather really went wrong,
Orientation moved right along.

65 mph winds and hibiscus plants don't mix well

They now know community life
Can be lived despite lots of strife
Of their goodness examples are rife
Despite heat you could cut with a knife!

Our houses’ aged exterior
After years of upkeep inferior
Found Isaac’s winds vastly superior,
At least Isaac spared the interior.


Storm windows were broken and tossed,
Siding swept away; now largely lost,
A pillar, unrepaired due to cost
May collapse, a hurdle to cross.  

For years, repairs promised, not made
Or when done of inferior grade
“Don’t worry,” they say, “plans are made.”
After years of this nonsense hopes fade.

 Come Saturday no reason to pout,
The AC is on, give a shout,
We slept well; folks are walking about
But that pillar is still rotted out.

The rotted pillar is not just a sign
Of decay of a house that’s a shrine
The issue’s easy today to define

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