Well, I tell people, look at it this way. They'll never have a ride like this
at Disney World!
That was some blow. As you recall, both Jorge and I were duly impressed by the
band that hit us around midnight. Launched some of my roofing metal, etc. One
sheet hit the pole in front of the house and bridged the gap between high and
low voltage lines. That was the end of my electricity, emailing, and power for
everything north of me -- everything. Next morning, as the aluminum sheet stuck
there like a sail, the main strike that surprised us all just broke that old
pole off at the ground. Lever action. Archimedes would be tickled. But that was
by no means the only pole that went hors de hurricane.
Hey, by 3:30 A.M. I had mopped even with the water flow and hit the rack. What
else do you do in the dark? Well, I got up around six to do one water table
balancing thing you have to do and finished just in time for the main strike.
No sweat, stayed in the house a while, decided it might not hold up, and went
next door to Bill Toonen's building -- Tradewinds. Very promptly resumed
sleeping. Got a lot of sleep on Main Strike Day. Not much else you can do. The
house didn't blow down, but the Tradewinds building, reinforced concrete, was
I keep reminding people that when I came here, and until about 1987 or so, we
had practically nothing on the island. You had to go to Belize to buy a
Crescent wrench. You could auction off a piece of wood you pried off your
house. Indeed they did auction off the old Ambergris Lodge, where the Mayan
Princess now sits, by sections. Our main lumber supply was a cargo boat
carrying excess deck cargo having to jettison some. Besides conditions in those
days, this is duck soup. Second day after the hurricane strike, a dude on a
bicycle delivering a hot pizza nearly ran me over. The pampered have a
different perspective, but for an old infantry grunt, or even an old San Pedro
hand, it's No Sweat City around here. Well, perspiration, yeah, okay, but no
I THINK you can email me at [email protected]
I'm mailing from the
CyberCafe right now. The public internet stations are online, which helps
alleviate the voicecall line at the phone company office (as do cellphones),
but power and telephone service are still not among us except on Barrier Reef
Drive, the main main drag.
Let's put in this way. The British Army came in distributing food and after a
few days found out they were just in the way. The grocery stores were restocked
the usual way the second day after the strike. Water, as I've often commented,
falls out of the sky, and one local reverse=osmosis operation borrowed my
little Homelite generator and started cranking immediately. Barry Bowen brought
in a boatload of Crystal purified water and gave it away, and is now serving
his regular customers.
The main problem is the volume of debris. It's amazing how much of that there
is, considering the number of houses that stood, as in most of them including
mine (excluding bodega, but that's a manageable development). So while cleaning
up my place, Raul Mendez, I, and Ford Tractor have been hauling away some for
other people, as we can.
Seems the center went through from about Journey's End northward, and that
area, I'm told, is wiped. The media people prowling keep shooting all the worst
for visual drama. But, man, except commercially, it's really not that bad.
On with the fun, back to the crowbar.