Monday, July 11, 2005

Weathering the Storm

(Hurricane Dennis approaches the Florida gulf coast / image credit: NASA)

Longtime readers of the Daily Yak may recall my family's adventures last September when Hurricane Ivan crashed ashore near my in-laws' home on Florida's gulf coast. That storm continued to demonstrate nature's fury days later when the storm hit us here in Maryland.

So, yesterday brought a sense of dej√° vu as Hurricane Dennis bore down on the same area of the gulf coast. This time around my wife's parents decided not to evacuate the area and instead spent their time battening down the hatches and securing their property. My tech-savvy father-in-law even took the time to set up a webcam (aimed out their back window) so the rest of us could check in on the real-time storm conditions (he figured the cam wouldn't last too long since they'd most likely lose electrical power). We also kept in touch by phone.

The brunt of the storm had passed by nightfall and our family seemed to have come through all right. As it turned out they did not lose power, and their property was relatively unscathed. They heard news reports that Dennis clobbered their area pretty hard, but as of last night there wasn't a real clear idea of the more widespread damage since the authorities instituted a curfew and asked everyone to stay off the roads.

As the remnants of Dennis head up our way, we'll have to wait and see if it has the staying power of last year's Ivan. At the moment it looks like we will be spared most of the severe weather and will probably just get a thorough soaking of rain.

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