Admitting to Being Power-less!

Omar, the other “O ” man in the news. This one, we didn’t need- the other one we surely do.

This storm turned into a Category 3 hurricane overnight, leaving most of the island without power for a week or more, 40 boats sunken in the harbor, huge mahongany trees fallen over like cardboard cut-outs, over 100 power poles down and a great tip of the humble homburg to Mother Nature.

Had it been a slight shift of 20 miles west, the eye would have been directly over us, but in spite of the above descriptions, he moved fast with a small center and left us after some hours in the middle of the night. It could have been so much worse.

We were prepared, had Coleman lanterns, water, radio, shutters,- spent the entire day before moving furniture and the crap of lifes’ collecting, into the house. Don’t we all have much more than we really use?

All this moving took place during the escalating winds in the afternoon before the Hurricane hit, and a deluge of rain that surged down our front steps like a waterfall- my futile attempts at push-brooming and re-directing the flow seemed pointless but there isn’t much you can do to feel like you have any say about what happens.

Then you wait. Light the lanterns, prepare food while you can see and still have electricity, zip up the shutters, give the skittish dog a vet prescribed Valium ( he trembles from rain and thunder- this would have been his undoing ), give the skittish wife a half a Xanax ( if not now, then when?!), stay in your clothes because you never know, and hope for the best.

The ugly part comes the next day with cleaning up what seems monumental. No structural damage to the house, just a lot of fallen trees- we had to chain saw our way up the steps to get to the cars. The winds whip the leaves off of everything and plaster them to the house and the vehicles like Colorforms.

We were a week without power and internet ( blessing? curse? ).

You learn- or perhaps re-learn to appreciate what you have and to see the collective of community – everyone gets or gives a hand, people give away fruit fallen from downed trees, and to its’ credit, our local agencies acted quickly and efficiently.

I witnessed another kind of symbiosis: our other dog, not the skittish one, was post-storm, snoozing on her pillow on the deck when I noticed THIS:

This lizard had been swiping and eating hovering mosquitos that were buzzing around the dog! It didn’t stop there-

I stood no less than 3 feet away while this lizard snapped skeeters off of the dogs’ fur with the cooperative and appreciative consent of the dog.

And still…..

The lizard was totally unfazed by my presence, stayed for a half hour and I believe by the time it left, my dog had purchased a Geico Insurance Policy!

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27 Responses to “Admitting to Being Power-less!”

  1. judith wolfe Says:

    Glad to see you back and doin’ what you love to do. Love the Beamer and pal.

  2. razzbuffnik Says:

    Good to see that you came through the bad weather unharmed.

    Your pictures of the dog and the lizard (is it an anole?) remind me of the symbiotic relationship that exist between the cleaner wrasse (Labroides dimidiatus) and their “clients”.

  3. bonnieluria Says:

    Judy- there will be plenty of ” pals ” for you to shoot when you get here in a few weeks.

    Razz- interesting, yes, it’s an anole ( not many people know the term ) and I’d never seen this exchange before. It’s like the egret on the back of cattle.

  4. nathaliewithanh Says:

    Yeah! You’re back! I guess you got back from Florida just in time for the Big O, and not the fun kind nor the needed kind. That’s REALLY bad timing!
    I’m glad you did not sustain any bad damages – although I have to say that chainsawing your way to the car is a bit to Texas Chainsaw Massacre to my taste! Not my kind of fun… but to each his own! I guess living in paradise comes at a price.
    I truly hope they were able to fend off the oil spills.

    What great lizard photographs (and conclusion!)

  5. S. Le Says:

    The lizard looks a lot like the one in the Geico adverts. Your dog doesn’t mind lizards then?

  6. Wreggie Says:

    Thar she blows! I was wondering when you would surface. We are certainly glad you guy are fine. It makes you appreciate the real things in life like friends and lovers.

  7. carolking Says:

    Yikes! So glad Omar didn’t hit you directly. And even though you lost power, there were no lost loved ones, human or animal.

    Loved your poochie with the lizard. He’s so calm, I’d be screaming “Get it off me, get it off me!”

    Miss Outdoors!

  8. w1kkp Says:

    Ah, when a new camera with macro features really comes in handy: close ups of an anole on beautiful soft dog fur! Those anoles are a beautiful color! Is that a mahogany tree? As to the value of no power? Big advantage: No news. And, you know what they say about no news. Am very glad you are back!

  9. bonnieluria Says:

    Nathalie- actually, my husband is the chain saw possessor and user. I direct. ” Over here, no there, a little higher”.
    I left here the day after it hit and came back a day after the power came back. Lucky….
    Glad you like the photos-

    S.Le- that dog is the most tolerant, laid back, happy animal. She is Zen, period.

    Wreggie- thanks for checking- I’ve been reading M&T’s blog also, just to catch up on the East End. We’re getting back to a rhythm although still have no TV. I have to get my angst from the internet and the radio!

    Carol, I can hear you screaming just in practice. This was hopefully the end of the season for these events.

    Pat, the Mahogany trees are so huge ( no the one in this post is a Ginger Thomas- our State flowering tree and quite brittle ) that they tend to be on the side of main roads where it’s hard to stop the car to get a shot off. We had so much rain before the winds arrived that the ground saturated and the roots are somewhat shallow so they just went kerplunk. Some enterprising people will no doubt show up with chain saws, cut cross sections and sell the wood. At least it will get used.
    And thank you- I’ve missed your comments and your blog entries as well.

  10. JoAnn Says:

    Between the wind and the mad chain saw wielder you may need the Geico policy. Glad you’re back and safe. Hopefully that’s the end of it for this year!

  11. Sharon Crute Says:

    Thank heavens you and your property were spared.

    I know the nerve-wracking madness of those storms. Listening to the deafening crack of targeted trees and holding your breath, waiting for the crash…

    The good news is indeed the experience of community afterward. Post-storm neighborhood barbecues to save the freezer food before it spoils creates a most abundant feast!

  12. planetross Says:

    Good to hear that you are fine and well.
    Since I don’t watch U.S. news very often, I’m not up on my hurricanes.
    I hope life is back to normal there or at least well on the way.

  13. bonnieluria Says:

    JoAnn- it should be the end but we never get complacent. November is technically on the chart for the end of the season but my feeling is – we’re done. Thanks for the humorous comment.

    Sharon- you and JoAnn, my two other compatriots in hurricane zone territory. Who better to understand the efforts before, the angst during, and the relentless clean up after!
    But we are a plucky lot!

    Planetross- I guess, I’d likewise have to admit to not watching Japanese news either. I know there’s a big world around us.
    Most of the attention, aside from home and yard, has been on the elections.
    It’s good to be back to regular if not normal, which would imply that I was.

  14. Marian Fortunati Says:

    My gosh, you’re a WONDERFUL photographer!!!
    You know you live in SUCH A BEAUTIFUL spot, but I guess all beauty has ugliness. You must have to worry about storms fairly frequently. Even when they don’t actually HIT, the winds and rains affect you a lot I’m sure!!
    I’m glad you’re okay and the community is warm and supportive of one another!! … another beautiful thing!
    Be well.

  15. mike rooney studios Says:

    glad you did alright and the storm didnt damage your house/cars or more importantly you. welcome back

  16. Nava Says:

    Oh wow what a week! Glad y’all are OK and well.

    that friendly gecko makes me think of the “From The Gecko” store in Christiansted. Does it still exist?

  17. bonnieluria Says:

    Marian- you’re so right and every place has it’s warts and its’ beauty. I’m just glad the season is over and now we get to exhale and enjoy the winter.

    Mike- thanks for the welcome- I can get on with painting and breathing! Glad you stopped by, your work is ever expanding.

    Nava-is this world too small? Yes, From the Gecko is still here so I have to find out how you know about it.

  18. TerryC Says:

    I love lizards! They’re adorable and they work hard to keep us as bug-free as possible. I have a great lizard story for you next time I see you…..

    I love your analogy of the leaves to colorforms. But colorforms are easier to get off!

  19. bonnieluria Says:

    Terry- I first caught up with your blog when our internet came back. I knew you’d have had a summary of events, and I’m glad it was no worse- for you and all of us.

    I’m eager to hear your lizard story…….

  20. Frank Gardner Says:

    Hi Bonnie, I am real glad to hear that you made out pretty well. A week without internet can be a blessing these days.

    The photos of the gecko and dog are great.

  21. bonnieluria Says:

    Frank- we’ve been 8 days without TV and I don’t miss it. I get enough agita from the web!

    We’re still hacking away at fallen tree limbs and pruning things that got crushed but at least it wasn’t our cars or our house/animals or us!

    Now I can get down to painting again.

  22. Nava Says:

    We’ve been to St. Croix four years ago. When we stayed in Christiansted, The JohnnyB took afternoon naps and I happily strolled the picturesque streets and stores, getting dozens of photos and cool souvenirs (including Sonya bracelets, of course!). “From The Gecko” was one of my favorites.

  23. bonnieluria Says:

    Nava- what a hoot! Four years ago I was working in a jewelry store directly next to the Gecko.
    Maybe our paths crossed.

    You can wear a Crucian hook bracelet in other parts of the world and people will recognize them.

    How funny….

  24. Nava Says:

    Oh wow – then we must have met, ’cause I did not skip even one store. Who knows, we may come back sometime – I really loved this island!

  25. epicurienne Says:

    Bonnie, wow. You have great good fortune to be through this one. A colleague is in the Caribbean at the moment. The day before she was due to fly out, news of Omar hit the web. We thought she was joking, but no. She and her family flew out regardless. I’ll be interested to hear her hurricane stories when she gets back. As for that lizard, how brave! I love the photo where he’s craning his neck to look at you.

  26. bonnieluria Says:

    Nava- when you DO come back, we’ll meet for sure!
    I’m glad you were charmed by it too.

    Epic- there are still people in the States who had no idea there was a hurricane down here! Funny how news gets disseminated. Depending on where your colleague was, she may have totally missed it. That would be a good thing!

  27. Mary Sheehan Winn Says:

    Glad you are ok.
    I love this skeeter eating lizard. Doesn’t he have quite the expression on?

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