Hello again all. It has been an interesting year since we left off last fall, and it is probably another year before I am fully prepared to return to the road. I really miss the road, and when I get back to it I want to be set up right. I am working in that direction - hopefully we have many more great experiences ahead.
I am writing a short blog to share my current circumstances - I am in Charleston SC with a hurricane bearing down on us - Hurricane Matthew they are calling it. As I am writing it I hear the sheets of rain pounding on the roof of a warehouse I am in and can look out and see the wind howling through the pine trees that surround the area. The satellite maps show it is looking like the storm has moved to the west a bit and is tracking straight toward us. The peak isn't for another six hours (It is 9 PM on Friday the 7th of October.)
Here is a short version of the preparations we have made - hopefully I will be posting some "after" pictures that look just like these.
The vast majority of our neighbors are long gone. Many have boarded windows and doors.
I am not alone though -I am hunkering down to ride this out with two of my favorite folks in the world - John and April Cato, along with their dog Blaze and cat Ella.
We spent yesterday dealing with plywood and filling sandbags. This is the entrance of the primary warehouse.
Next door we have a second warehouse - this shot is after the sandbags have been laid.
One of the neighbors left a boat in front - and the front support doesn't look too safe.
So I let the air out of the tires - at least if it lets go it won't go cruising through the parking lot.
The same fellow has these boats sitting just out back - if we get too flooded we should be able to get out by water anyway.
When you are considering winds that may hit over 100 miles per hour, things look different. Everything becomes a potential projectile or battering ram. This trailer, the bricks, logs and stack of wood look ominous.
One of the residents recently went bankrupt and left a mess. This is a huge stack of five gallon buckets full of paint.
These look way too dangerous to all of us. None of us are too keen on playing some weird game of paint ball as these buckets get picked up and smashed through the walls of the warehouse.
I was thinking of doing a live internet video feed during the hurricane and allowing folks to bet on the color of the next bucket of paint that smashed against the warehouse. I am sure it would be quite the hit.
The same fellow has left three vehicles behind to be auctioned off. We decided his trucks could act as a barricade for his paint. So it took jumping vehicles to get them running - one had to be towed. But we used them as a make-shift impound for the paint buckets.
These big pipes look a little scary too - but as they are pretty heavy and made of rubber perhaps they will be fine.
One guy who didn't leave a key for his truck parked right below this tree that is rotted and just waiting to fall.
One of our neighbors- Kirby - is staying next door.
Kirby backed his travel trailer into his warehouse, along with the antique cars. Along with owning the complex, Kirby makes custom cabinetry for hospitals and hotels.
Preparations moving along - the door to the main warehouse is sandbagged.
The front door will be sandbagged shut, but the back will be sandbagged on the inside so we can get in and out.
Vehicles, boats and trailers are all pulled inside our two units.
The trucks are used to block the doors.
If you noticed, all along the one wall of the warehouse are murals made from photos taken on the road.
So, we have a generator, cans of gasoline and several coolers full of ice. We have a dozen gallons of drinking water.
We have a propane grill and two freezers along with a refrigerator. If worst came to worst, we could survive a month with just what we have here.
We also filled up a number of styrofoam coolers with water to use to flush the commode.
A recent acquisition is proving quite handy - a large ice machine with a water filtration system that an acquaintance brought over to test out. Our water has a high sulfur content here, but the filters do a great job.
So that's it - my first real hurricane. If all works out, I will be out late tomorrow after it clears with the camera.
But the governor of a local state issued a warning that "if you stay, you and all of your friends will be dead." So, if we all succumb to Matthew, I will be sure to send out a blog right away and advise you of the arrangements being made for us.
We are expecting to lose power any minute - it has flickered a few times. So until next time, here is today's parting shot -