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Showing posts from September, 2008

Enough With the Bad News Already


With all the bad news, destruction, power-loss and traffic congestion, I could not stomach subjecting my fellow Baytonians (and my own sanity) to one more bad and horrifying story line, so taking your pardon, I'm writing about nothing relating to misery this week.

We deserve a break from this reality in all its ugliness, so without further ado, here goes.

Sitting on my patio the day after the big disturbance, I saw what I thought was an exotic and mysterious bird, heretofore undiscovered in these parts. It was definitely a hummingbird, just not one of the varieties native to our area. It was white with flecks of brown in it. Researching hummers on the Internet, I realized I was indeed seeing a rare bird.

It was an uncommon leucistic hummingbird on our patio September 12. This was the day Hurricane Ike came and went. The poor critter was fluffed up, wet and very tired. It rested in our crape myrtle for about 20 minutes. I wrote the staff from Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural H…

And a Hard Rain Fell

It’s hard to believe that one week and a day have passed since Hurricane Ike rudely elbowed his way into our lives. I hated that storm as much as I thought I would, but we dug down deep and revived the Texas pioneer spirit that lay deep within our being to simply…endure. And endure we did, sleeping uncomfortably in the night heat, dragging and cutting tree limbs and attempting to recover from the stupor and shock caused by H-IKE. We are not used to this abuse and as tough as we would like to see ourselves, in many ways we failed miserably.

Most were very fortunate damage-wise, but we are also very spoiled in our modern ways, so any change in the way we normally do things, is an inconvenience and a lot of hard work to boot, especially when you consider cleaning up the tree damage. Here it is a week after the trees fell and my fingers are almost too sore to type and there is still work to do.

Frankly, we are sick of all this destruction and drama and want to forget it and move on, but …

I’m mad too Eddie!

I drove down to the POD on Baker road in Baytown this morning at 0730 as KHOU TV said the POD was open and I wanted to see one in action. I personally am not in need of MRE’s, ice or water, but for knowledge sake, I went down to see one in action.

What a total bureaucratic mess. There must have been 25 uniformed government employees meandering around the parking lot, moving cones, etc., but the POD doesn't open until 10am. I am told this POD is run by Commissioner Garcia.

Cars were pouring in only to be ignored with no directional signs or human direction and when I asked a parked Constable at the far end of the road what was going on, he told me it was open. He didn’t appear to have an inclination to do more than sit there.

I told him the entrance was coned off and he said "No, it’s not". I drove back the two hundred yards to the entrance and observed the steady row of cones across both entrances, exited my vehicle, walked across the parking lot to the six armed guards…

Hurricane blues before the big blow

I am remiss to even think about how inaccurate and tiresome this article will appear when folks read it after Hurricane Ike blows through. Here it is Friday morning, the twelfth of September; we are expecting the wind to pick up in about five hours and the feeling of controlled panic/resolve and gut-grit are wafting through the city.

Anyone can readily see that this storm is going to be Alicia all over again and for those of us who were subjected to her fury; this won’t be a picnic or a near miss like Rita, Eduard, or any other storm since 1983. This one feels serious. Everyone knows it. Some are vocalizing it to ease their dread, some are warning to do all we can to prevent loss of life and damage to property, but no one is joking about how tough they are or how this storm is nothing to worry about. We don’t even want to think this will be Carla again.

All other hurricanes are forgettable to me since Alicia. I sometimes get Katrina and Rita confused with which was which and that …

"It's a Beautiful Day, Men"!

I start off my workday each and every time I walk through the Plant gate with these words "Morning men, it's a beautiful day". "Morning Bert" is usually what I hear chorused from my two favorite guards, Charles and Bob. Charles and Bob are both well read and never miss an opportunity to entertain me. It's like they've been waiting for me to come in and we look forward to the verbal jousts. "Where you been, Bert? About time you got here." says Bob. I look at my watch. I'm fifteen minutes early. Charles grins.

Charles usually has a nugget of trivia (read: hardcore statistics or difficult to come by knowledge he has personally ferreted out) he feels I should know, or a very, very good book recommendation and Bob - well, Bob is named Bob for a good reason. Bob's peculiar, but in a good way.

It's been my experience that anyone named Bob is probably going to be worth investigating as a friend. Bob's have curiously strong personalities …