This is for the stressed theme challenge
When we were looking at places to retire we had been told there hadn¬ít been a hurricane in or around the Orlando area for 40 years. After the hurricane season of 2004 we feel we should be set for 120 years!
When June 1st rolled around, Jim took the hurricane preparations seriously, purchased extra batteries for the flashlights and a battery powered radio.
We felt fortunate nothing had happened until August 9th we heard they were tracking Hurricane Charlie. On August 12th we brought in the furniture from the lani, filled containers with water, stocked up on nonperishable food and filled the cars with gas. On Friday, August 13th we waited and listened to the news and weather reports.
It was predicted to go further north and miss us, but they can turn quite rapidly. Those that had evacuated from the Tampa area came to Orlando; little did they know they were now right in its path. It started with bands of rain, then the wind, we lost power in the late afternoon. We felt pretty safe since our home was built with the newest building codes. The howl of the wind was horrible and the blue flashes when transformers blew were eerie.
We were fortunate to only loose some plants and items from the refrigerator, since our power was off for a little over a day. All the bands of rain filled our pool. Our trees were all so new we didn¬ít loose the large branches or have damage from them falling as so many did.
We had gone to South Dakota for a visit when Hurricane Frances developed. It went over Orlando September 5th. It was a little stressful being so far away when we knew our home was in its path, but there wasn¬ít anything we could do, except hope it would again weather the storm. When we arrived home, we felt very fortunate that once again we had little damage, when so many had lost everything. Some were still without power when we were told Hurricane Jeanne could possibly be heading for Florida. We had tickets for a vacation to Hawaii and didn¬ít change our plans. We figured if everything was fine through two, it would be fine through a third. It was much more stressful to try and get information from even further away, especially in Hawaii, where everything can be pretty out of touch and laid back. This time we had an outside light fixture blown loose and swinging by the wires and could tell the power had been out.
Melissia was on the ride-out crew at the All-Star resort for all three hurricanes, which meant she was there for the duration, sleeping whenever and wherever she could. The parks had closed and guests were told to stay in their rooms, some did not take the storms seriously, which caused even more problems for the managers. She and Mike were great about going and checking on our house after the hurricanes while we were gone.
We learned a lot about hurricanes our first season in Florida, but I¬íll still take one over a blizzard any day, at least we won¬ít freeze to death.