Cider Press Hill


Thursday, 5:20 pm

This is Hurricane Ike. What a massive storm.

Consider that the Gulf of Mexico is about 800 miles across and Ike is taking up most of it...and still growing. Ike is now larger than Katrina, though not yet quite as strong. At least in terms of wind. (It will probably intensify tonight now that it’s going over some very warm water again.) However, the storm surge is already kicking up from Florida to Texas. I heard recent reports that Mobile, Alabama is flooding, the coastal parishes in Louisiana are under mandatory evacuation orders, and Galveston, Texas is also experiencing surge related flooding already. Some of the electricity infrastructure repairs in southeastern Louisiana, from Gustav, have been blown down again today. If this thing hits the Galveston/Houston area, I wonder how much will be left when the storm is past. This is an astonishing storm. Scary astonishing. The storm surge, anywhere between 15 and 20 feet, is like a wall of water the height of an average house bearing down on the coastal areas. Kind of like a tsunami. If I saw that coming at me, I’m pretty sure I’d die of fright before anything else. I hope the people in the coastal areas are packing up and heading as far inland as possible. My thoughts and best wishes are certainly with them.

This is what the National Weather Service says about the Galveston/Houston area:

Life threatening inundation likely!

All neighborhoods… and possibly entire coastal communities…
will be inundated during the period of peak storm tide. Persons
not heeding evacuation orders in single family one or two story
homes will face certain death. Many residences of average
construction directly on the coast will be destroyed. Widespread
and devastating personal property damage is likely elsewhere.
Vehicles left behind will likely be swept away. Numerous roads
will be swamped… some may be washed away by the water. Entire
flood prone coastal communities will be cutoff. Water levels may
exceed 9 feet for more than a mile inland. Coastal residents in
multi-story facilities risk being cutoff. Conditions will be
worsened by battering waves. Such waves will exacerbate property
damage… with massive destruction of homes… including those of
block construction. Damage from beach erosion could take years to

Meanwhile, hope you have a full gas tank at yesterday’s prices. Looks as if the price of gasoline in the southern portion of the US has already skyrocked and the rest of us will probably feel it to some degree or another for a while. Almost all the refineries are shut down, some have been since Gustav blew through. Remains to be seen how many will remain out of operation after this storm. No refineries in operation and closed ports equals no gasoline. Looks as if this is going to be a brutal September.

Posted by Kate on 09/1108 at 05:20 PM
not heeding evacuation orders in single family one or two story
homes will face certain death.

Jeepers.  How’s that for non-bureaucratic language!

Posted by Linkmeister on 09/11  at  07:13 PM

The National Weather Service folks aren’t given to hyperbole, so this sort of snaps one to attention. The only other one I’ve seen in this vein was issued about 24 hours prior to Katrina’s landfall. It was also written in very non-bureaucratic language. Considering that, I think I’d pay attention to this one.

Posted by Kate on 09/11  at  08:34 PM

Yikes........ I sort of lost touch with this one the last day or two.  Just got in from serving dinner at the shelter (more about that another time...) and getting caught up with what is going on.

I am with you, if I saw that wall of water I, too, would probably die of fright.  Kind of makes our nor’easters seem not so bad, eh?

And I guess I should have gotten gas yesterday.  Drove home tonight thinking I should stop as I have a little more than fumes in the tank, but decided to wait til tomorrow.  So you think the lull is apparently over??

Posted by cyn on 09/11  at  08:53 PM

Dunno, Cyn. There are already gasoline shortages in the south. There is virtually no refining going on and the ports that were open after Gustav are now closed. Port Fourchon in Louisiana has been operating at reduced capacity this past week and is closed again so no oil is being off-loaded.  Wouldn’t matter anyway with the refineries closed. Houston shipping channel is now closed, too. It all depends on how much damage is done. Refineries don’t deal well with flooding and most of them are in low coastal areas near the shipping channels and ports. The Houston shipping channel is refinery row with a couple of the biggest refineries in the world. And right now they’ve got a big fat bullseye painted on them. After Katrina, it took a few of the refineries almost a year to complete repairs. Hope for the best and prepare for the worst, as the saying goes.

I’d like to hear more about your shelter experiences, btw.

Posted by Kate on 09/11  at  09:09 PM

I admit that packing up a refinery and moving it a few miles inland is not the easiest job in the world, but if I owned one then after Katrina I’d have thought about scouting new locations.

Posted by Linkmeister on 09/12  at  01:10 AM

You were right about the gas.  3.43 last week or last time I got it, might have been more than a week.  3.56 at the cheapest station in town-Gulf - about a half hour ago.

Would love to share the shelter story with you.  Something I have been volunteering at for over a year now.  Like much of my volunteering, I think I get far more from it than I give....

Just sent you several emails and a link I KNOW you will find interesting.

Posted by cyn on 09/12  at  12:19 PM

Gas was up to $3.59 here this morning. That’s about a 10 cent increase from Monday. Sounds like it may get worse. They’re rationing gasoline in some of the southern states—at least where they still have gas. I didn’t buy gas this morning, but now I’m thinking maybe I should this afternoon.

This is going to be a storm for the record books, I think. I’m not sure I can even grasp the enormity of the destruction about to happen. And there are large numbers of people who haven’t even evacuated off Galveston yet. Dear heaven. The tide is already overtopping the seawall. I think there’s still time to get out. When the storm hits, it’s going to be around the time of high tide, too.

I haven’t gotten to my email yet. I’ll make a pot of coffee later and sit down to read at leisure.

Posted by Kate on 09/12  at  01:32 PM

Linkmeister, if the refinery owners didn’t think about it before, they probably will be thinking about it next week. They can’t move the refineries, but I would think it would be more cost effective to build berms around them than go through this every couple of years, since the storms seem to be coming in stronger and bigger and more frequently. Not that it probably hasn’t already been considered.

Posted by Kate on 09/12  at  01:42 PM

such a nice treat to find your blog! i will return to read more when time permits. i read the list of tid bits about you and enjoyed that very much. i browsed your photo gallery and see that you enjoy visiting cemeteries as much as i do. i always create stories about the people as i read the markers and find their relatives.

the ghost in your house must have been a big adventure! i would love to know more one day about the poem you wrote about the future love of your ex husband. was that a case of “creating” destiny? spooky.

what an election!  great that you are no longer an evangelical right winger!

here in the seattle area we deal with earthquake possiblities instead of hurricanes. these yearly storms along the atlantic and gulf are terrifying.

thanks for such a nice visit tonight.  smile)

Posted by sky on 09/13  at  03:14 AM

Welcome Sky, pleased to meetcha.

Yes, I’ve always enjoyed browsing through cemeteries. The headstones range between utterly tragic to screamingly funny. Some folks do manage to get the last word in on their headstones...or their relatives do. The last revenge! Nevertheless, cemeteries are peaceful places to spend an afternoon (or early morning).

My ghost was an interesting experience. Nothing dramatic, but he made his presence known. Kind of like a quiet fourth family member. As for that poem? Well, I think I chose very well for him. ;)

This election is going to turn me into a screaming maniac. My friends already know better than to bring up politics when I’m around. I get a little...uh...choleric!

Come back any time, Sky. Glad you found my blog.

Posted by Kate on 09/14  at  01:50 PM