Thursday, September 11, 2008

Gustav, can't get you out of my mind

Still getting back to the norm. Gustav is still on everyone's mind, the city is still fonked up, so its hard to move forward.


A few photos of the apartment damage. The sad thing is, I took these on Sunday. The debri is still there. Nothing has been cleaned up by management. I'm crawling over these trees every morning in my heels to get to my car. We're going on 11 days now with zero clean up. Have you smelled a rotting tree before?






















This is the Comite River, which was across from where J and I were staying at his parent's house. Yes, those are tree tops. You can see that its reached the bottom of the bridge. It rose over 8 feet. In this particular spot there are usually sand bars that run along side of the river where J and I ride the 4 wheeler with friends.















This house is to the left of the photo of the river above. This property is considered prime real estate for our area. Its every country boy's dream to have a piece of land to build on that backs up to this river. Its a big want to have easy access for riding and spending time with your family on the river. Now, this prime real estate is a swamp.


On myspace there's a survey circulating about Gustav. I pulled a few questions from it for fun to share. I'm also stealing a funny about Gustav from Michelle's blog, further down.


Hurricane Gustav survey

Where were you when Gustav hit? At my in-laws to-be with J

What was the most valuable thing you packed? my engagement ring

What was the funniest thing you did while you were evacuated? J had me cut up some tree branches with a chain saw. My first time with heavy machinery. (Yes, it WAS heavy!) Prob not funny but it was fun and I felt awful silly. Also, I guess, flipping on lights when entering into rooms when we had no electricity.Grr!


What was the craziest thing you witnessed while evacuating? I didn't evacute but my Monday drive to and from work was pretty crazy. I live 6 miles from my apartment to work and it took me two hours to get to work and two hours to get back home.

Would you say you and your honey got closer during this disaster or did you duke it out from frustration? I think we really found an new appreciation for each other. We just took care of things and worked together as a team. It was fun and lifted stress off the other. J would sit in line for gas and ice, I would cook. J would take care of this, I would take care of that. I don't think we snapped at each other once. J told me, in times like this you really see the best and worst of the people you know. I learned a lot, saw the worst come out in others and the best come out in J.


What is the one memory that stands out about this event that you will NEVER forget? Nothing huge, just little things. Waking up in the mornings feeling like we'd been beaten because of the heat and lack of flowing air through the house. Standing in lines just to get into Walmart for a prescription. Hour and a half lines for gas. 500 people deep lines for MREs and tarps. Can't list just one.

Did you eat a certain food that you just had to have for comfort? I had a bag of Chili Cheese Fritos that I nibbled on all week. They remind me dearly of my Paw Paw. He used to have them in his grocery store and they were our favorite. I found myself returning to them when I was bored or stressed.

Were you horrified when you drove back into town or was it what you expected? We were in the middle of it (a bit outside of town) and took the 4 wheeler to see the damage. Seeing those HUGE oak trees uprooted and thrown on homes and power lines was freaky. Neighbors worked together to chain saw trees that had fallen, blocking main roads.

If another hurricane threatens your town this year will you evacuate? no I'm staying put!

What's the weirdest thing you saw in the debris? Insulation. looked like soaked cotton candy, gross

Do you wish you would have stayed evacuated for a little longer?NO! After 8 days of no power and living with others, I was so ready for my own bed and the AC!

How long did you have to stay in line to get free MRE meals? We just rationed our food, didn't need MREs, we were pretty prepared.

When this is all said and done, do you think you will have a higher appreciation for everything?absolutely. for a/c most of all and so thankful that J is the person he is - helpful, supportive, responsible, a hard worker and care-taker

And now for the funny:

Gustav's Guide to Hurricane Survival


Lessons learned during and after the storm

The hurricane grouch quotient can be calculated by adding the number of children and pets in a home without power, multiplied by the number of days quoted on the power company telephone recording, divided by the number of fans and portable air conditioners powered by your home generator, (however, if you were last in line at Home Depot and have no generator then multiply by the daily high for that day), then add the number of trips to the washateria and the days left until school/daycare reopens. Discount by the percentage of time spent at a neighbor or family members that has power. Recalculate as needed.

No mater how many times you flick the switch, lights won't work without electricity.

It's the only time you'll ever be jealous of someone with gas cans strapped to the roof of their car.

Vienna sausages only appear on the food pyramid during hurricane season.

Gas mileage is recalculated based on miles per fume.

Lovebugs do not disappear in 80+ mph winds.
Disasters can cancel 1 LSU football game but there will be even bigger casualties if we cancel 2.

Baton Rouge resembles Mexico City without traffic lights.

The drain pan under a defrosted freezer can smell like a dead body.

MRE Emergency Meals taste like canned chunky soup and spaghetti 'os .

A frozen jug of water will keep a gallon of milk cold for 2 days in an ice chest.

There are/were a lot of really big trees around here

People will get into a line that has already formed without having any idea what the line is for.

Calories consumed during a hurricane or power outage don't count.

Telemarketers function no matter what the weather is doing.

Most popular text message after September 1st was "do you have power?"

Crickets can increase their volume to overcome the sound of 14 generators.

Dirty clothes in an unsupervised hamper multiply at an exponential rate.

Coffee, spaghetti, french fries and frozen pizzas can be made on a grill.

He who has the biggest generator wins.

Tree service companies are under-appreciated except after a hurricane.

There are a lot more stars in the sky than most people thought.

If you owned a store that sold only ice, chain saws, gas, generators, you would be rich.




That's all for now. I'll try to refrain from Gustav posts from now on. Time to move on I suppose.
Oh yeah, J and I have a house! It's OURS!!!! While I'm blogging away (because I've been told by my favorite fan that I'm not blogging enough, eh hmm "J" eh hmm) he's packing my stuff. Ha! (Love you babe?)

9 comments:

Ben said...

That is one hell of a ride, hard to imagine actually even with all the details and pictures. Consider yourselves lucky ol' Ike didn't decide to pay you a visit as well.

Congrats on your guys new abode Jillie, enjoy.

TGIF

Cheers

Kitty said...

When Mother Nature does that stuff, it puts everything else into perspective, doesn't it?

CONGRATULATIONS on getting the house!!! x

Roxrocks said...

Is your house on high ground? That would be my first desire after the whole Gustav thing! WOW, the pics are mind-blowing! I'm glad you guys weathered the storm...

Congratulations on the house! Pictures please!

-Papa said...

Is your new house on stilts? :P

Kelly said...

glad you're ok though! congrats on the house! Does the yard have trees? Or should I say DID the yard have trees?

jason said...

As miserable as that situation was, I really enjoyed our time together.
The end of the post with the lighter side of the hurricane was so funny yet so true. How do those damn bugs survive hurricane force winds?
I got one more to add-
Real cooks skills get tested when theres no electricity. How many meals can you create with limited supplies and then cook outside either on a bbq pit/grill or with a propane tank?
I also heard a guy call into the radio during all the aftermath coverage, he said "Hard times don't create character, they reveal it." Thought that was kinda cool.
LOVE YOU BABY!!!!
Lets move some shit this weekend!!!!!!

Real Live Lesbian said...

Wow, glad you're okay. It amazes me how long it takes to clean up after these things. And they just keep hitting the poor folks on the coast.

Congrats on the new house!

Stacie said...

SO AWSOME about the house! Yay for that! Also, so glad you guys weathered the storm as well as you did. My hats off to both of you and YAY For you girlie wielding that chainsaw like a pro! Girl Power! Rock on!!!!
:P

I'm also glad that you both can see the humor in things at the end of it all, that speaks VOLUMES for BOTH of you!
Stacie

Hammer said...

What a horrid mess. I was thinking of buying property closer to the gulf but I'm seriously reconsidering.

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