Monday, August 29, 2005

hurricanes

This thing hitting New Orleans is pretty scary. The night that the eye of Hurricane Fran went over Raleigh, I was having the CD release party (typical of my luck) for my 2nd record. Of course, the crowd was scant as everyone was hunkered down at home, but the band played on. As we were finishing our set the lights started to flicker and we finally did lose power before the big finale. We loaded out during wind gusts of 90 miles an hour. When I got in the car to go back to Bunn I realized that it wasn't gonna happen and that I was stuck in Raleigh. The traffic lights were all horizonal at that point so I began the adventure of driving to the closest friends' house I could get to. At every turn for the next 45 minutes every street that I turned on was closed off by at least one if not a dozen fallen oak trees. (At the time, Raleigh was known as "The City of Oaks", not sure if it still is) I finally made it to my friend, Bob Passarelli's (Bob's the guy that I do the truffle thing with) house by driving over the top of one of those trees. I woke them up. He and his family had no idea it was as bad as it was. He instructed me to sleep on the couch in the add-on flat roof room in the back of the house. I was laying there for one minute when something or someone (I still believe it was my Grandma) told me to get up NOW! So I jumped up and went to lay beside the hearth of the fireplace. As soon as I had moved to the other room a giant oak tree branch went though the roof and through that COUCH! Since it was a flat roof, the water began pouring into the house like a fauset. We grabbed an axe an knocked a hole in the floor so the water could drain, thus not pouring into the rest of the house. We found out later that a tornado had gone through the back yard. It was 4am by the time we were able to actually lay back down. He put me in his daughter's room this time (get your mind outta the gutters, she was sleeping with them!). It wasn't long after I had layed down there that I heard another large oak fall right outside of the window. It fell down along the side of the house, missing the house by only about 4 feet.
I got up a few hours later and went outside. The destruction was unbelievable. I found a way during the daylight to get back home. My mouth was open in disbelief all the way. I pulled in the driveway and was happy to see that the large oak in my yard was still standing. I had talked to my wife earlier so I knew that they had made it though OK (by sleeping in the tub). Nathan was only 6 months old at the time. We were without power for the next 5 days (and nights) and I had to get up and warm his bottle on a propane camper stove. Good times, good times...

2 comments:

Jason B. Graves said...
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Jason B. Graves said...

I have family in Covington, across the lake from N.O. and yeah, it's scary... They made it to Baton Rouge without incedent and managed to get back yesterday to find their house virtually unscathed. Truly amazing...

Big fan, by the way. I used to sneak into the Brewery to watch the Woods when I was in H.S. Sorry to erase the last comment... Forgot to mention I love "Fat Lady in the Stands."