Blessed by GOD, to be loud and proud of what is good and right and true! GOD bless us, Everyone! IJCNA

Saturday, September 24, 2005

After the storm...

I want to say a special thank you to all my friends! I got phone calls and emails from the west coast to the east coast and many places in between, even from Canada! Ohhhh I do feel the love today!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your prayers and encouraging words...
a special thank you from Annie who put it to me like this...

"maybe your property was spared since you have been generously sheltering others in need.
karma perhaps? I'm just so relieved that you are okay..."

I hadnt even thought of that, it really helped me to feel alot better Annie, thank you!

I am now going to post some emails I had sent out... the newest one hasnt even gone out to everyone yet... but I am ready to put it here.

Sat AM...
The 2 things I was most worried about didnt happen. Well one halfway happened. What didnt happen was I thought that the big garbage can that the city gave us, which was packed full would tumble over and spill garbage all over and I would be out there for hours picking it up. Thank GOD that didnt happen. The other thing I was worried about was that dead tree in the front of the house. I was so afraid one of those big limbs would fall off and come crashing through the house. Well... the tree had come apart, but nothing came in the house. It is all in my front yard. It wont be to hard to move the limbs to the side of the road. I would gladly do that rather than have to wait for someone to remove them from crashing into my house. I stayed up all night listening to the wind. From my bedroom I could hear the wind pressing and bending the back french doors. Windows rattled... walls creaked... and I stayed in constant prayer! I did manage to sleep a little bit between 3 and 5 AM. I guess I was just exhausted because the wind was still blowing. I was also afraid of flooding. But we actually didnt get much rain. In the back yard, the neighbors banana trees are laying over my fence. The wind is still blowing in gusts... I think, officiallly it was 35 to 60 mph winds. Now, I hear many people returning to the neighborhood.
I am so glad that my prayers were answered! Last night I was telling someone on the phone that GOD heard my prayers, and Rita started laughing and calling me Saint MotherPope... hahaha she reminded me that there were others who were praying too, she admitted she probably didnt pray AS MUCH as I did... but others were praying too. This struck me as so funny and we laughed really hard as she immitated someone bowing at someones feet. hahaha... I am still laughing about it. I know that so many others were praying... I know I wasnt the ONLY one praying. But I do know that I have a special HOTLINE to GOD and HE does hear my prayers.
I am slightly worried about my kids. I got them out of here. But they went to my moms up NORTH and seems like they got worse than we did. Now I wish I would of kept them here. I hope they are all well. I have tried to call the house the phone is out. She has a house on top of big pillars with trees all around. I am praying that they are all OK. My sister and her man and her daughter was there too. My son, his wife and my Stelle were there too. Thinking that Houston was going to be hit harder, I thought I had sent them to safety... I feel real remorse for this. When I hear from them I will feel better.
posted Sat. 7PM
WOW... I know storms are a raging... and we were all worried. I was more worried when I couldnt get hold of my kids all day after the storm. But my mother finally called a few minutes ago. They had a tree down across their driveway and my son and my sisters boyfriend got a chainsaw and moved it out of the way so they could get a car out. There were 3 trees down across the power line on that road. She is at the end of a long street that is all trees. She bought the last piece of property on that road so she could be down there alone for as long as possible... even after all these years... the other property hasnt been sold. So her 5 acres is in the middle of the piney woods. Her house is on pillars and the pillar with the elec. box on it, fell out during the storm, they lost power and phone lines. And because my mother has an electric water pump, they also have no water to the house. But, my son had bought a couple cases of bottled water. So they will be OK.
I spent a frantic half a day trying to find out information about that area, because none of the kids or my sisters cell phones were working. I am sorta smiling about my cityfied part of my family going into the woods with my countryfied part of my family with no power... in the middle of nowhere... only trees around. I think town is 3 miles away. When I tried to call the local emergency people today only a couple numbers answered. One guy at the city secretary office saying, all the lines are down. But he gave me no good news. I cried to him about my children... as it got later in the day and I didnt hear from them, I tried more numbers... no help... not even from that guy before. I even frantically called channel 2 news to ask questions... The young woman who answered only told me that if they were near the Trinity that I needed to tell them to evacuate... she didnt even hear me tell her that I couldnt reach them and she said to text them on the cell phone and I told her I had done that and got no answer. But all that happened was the guy on TV came on and was saying that anyone near the Trinity river needed to evacuate cause they were gonna open some flood gates. I knew my mom was close but I wasnt sure how close. I really started to panic then. I tried more numbers... had a whole list from off the internet. I started right down the line. Finally the Transportation line answerd... and I started talking and when I got to the part of my kids... I started crying... and he gave me a number to call who would know more about that area... and that guy at the sherriffs office even heard me crying... but he didnt have any information about the structure damages. They only told me dont come looking for my kids... told me to wait...
I cant tell you the sick feeling inside a mothers stomach when she is thinking her children are injured or dead. I somehow remembered my dads brothers ex wifes new married name and went online and found a number. She also lives in Shepherd. She answered and said she had tried to call my mom and no one answered. When I started to cry she tried to make me feel better... told me that the evacuation wasnt for them, that they were about 18 miles away from the levey with a big hill in between... but... I was still imagining the house crashing in on all of them and they all dying. She promised me when my cousin got home they would go check on them. And it was while I was talking to her... my mother called on the other phone! I was so relieved when I heard her tell me everyone was fine. I broke down hard... whew... we talked, with her on the ONLY payphone at the truckstop. She gave me her info so I could call about her electricity problem. And when I had calmed down... I was OK to hang up.
hahaha... I am laughing at all the people who have a story to tell later about some histerical mother calling looking for her kids! lol
I had even heard from my sister who lives in Baytown on the water and they had mandatory evacuation, they just got home a few minutes ago and called and said everything was good at her house. So, everyone is OK... and accounted for.
It was sure a hard time for me... hey... anyone got a valium? lol... *smile*

And the following is an email I recieved from a friend I have known since Jr High school... it is really a good first hand account of the mass Exodus from Houston...

Friday Sept 23, posted)

Fleeing no good!
hey~ made a valiant attempt to flee this monster storm. Thought I did everything right by not waiting until the last minute and tried to make reservations etc. The reservations part failed miserably due to ALL thehotels being full of Katrina evacuees but I still knew I had to get out. Myson, Randy Lee, and I loaded up his little truck with food, water and enoughclothes for a week and my precious Titus, a full tank of gas we got thenight before and headed out. We managed to make it a whopping 38.6 miles in12 and a half hours! Gridlock doesn't begin to describe the nightmare weencountered. People over-heating all around and running out of gas and toomany hoopties on the road breaking down. Idiots jamming up the freewaytrying to go UP the off ramps and cut in line, which of course people inline on the freeway wouldn't allow so it came to a screeching halt once theconvoy ( 5 cars did this!) of dummies tried to force their way onto thefreeway going in the wrong direction and bumping cars trying to force in. Ofcourse, there were disputes from that and it turned into a racist thingbecause the people going the wrong way were black and the people whowouldn't let them on were not and it was so ridiculous. It never seemed tooccur to them or they just didn't care that by doing what they did insteadof just going down to the next on-ramp that they jammed up the entirefreeway for miles for thousands of people. Even though there were people whowould let them on to move traffic it was extremely difficult because thecars really had no way of turning around now to get in the right directionand that was a nightmare trying to execute that as so many cars, and 3busses had to back up, move over and make all kinds of maneuvers that wereextremely difficult in bumper-to-bumper traffic! And there were cars on theshoulder that also made what they were attempting to do even more difficult.It wasn't racist. It was stupid and selfish and thoughtless, not to mentiondangerous. Just ridiculously stupid. Anyways, once we got down to less thana quarter tank of gas I decided we just had to give up lest we become one ofthe cars sitting on the road out of gas to ride the storm out. We managed toget off after moving 1.2 miles in 4 hours of that particular fiasco and justcame home. Only took 45 minutes to get home because traffic in thatdirection was sparse , of course. Gave some water to an old couple whoseradiator was spewing water everywhere and thought the old girl was going tocry. Had to use the restroom on the freeway after 9 hours and couldn't holdit anymore. Got out and ran across 5 lanes on the other side of the barrierand went between two parked vans. How humiliating! Of course, everyone KNEWwhat I was doing and I was embarrassed but didn't know what else to do, youknow? This is so terrible. So many people on the road, the side of the road,the esplanades. No stations with gas, no water. Found a station with gas onmy side of town and filled up AGAIN and filled up a five gallon container ofgas and a five gallon container of water and restocked more drinking waterand snacks for my son and sent him back on the road a different route toAustin. He called me at 6 am to tell me he had finally made it in less then11 hours. Thank God! He is going to stay at my ex bosses house with her andher girlfriend. I was too swollen from my disease to try to go again sosoon. Can't sit in a car that long. Am fixing to try to get out again. The roads appear to be thinning out though there are still hundreds of people along side broken down or out of gas. The city dropped the ball on this.They ordered an evacuation and too many stations ran out of gas or outright closed so they could flee too. They should've had designated stations staying open with tankers of gas to handle this mass exodus. Hope it is not too late. Don't want to be a statistic when this storm blows through. Wish me luck and prayers. Will talk soon when (if) I have a home to come back to.Love, Barb

update on Barb as soon as possible....