What my first tropi...
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What my first tropical storm on STX has taught me

Posts: 28
Eminent Member
Topic starter

Yes, I'm the one who wrote about what 2 months living on STX has taught me. Well, now I've experienced my first heavy tropical storm, and learned more about the reality of living here. BTW, I get on the plane (or do I) in one week.

I've enjoyed the rain storms here, especially the ones with a little ligthening & thunder to remind me of my roots in WI long ago. I've been a San Diego resident for over 25 yrs now & we get a little rain (maybe) in the winter, then none for most of the yr. So the short rains almost every day here have been a treat. But was Irene a treat? Not exactly!

When the afternoon storm hit hard I thought, wow, that's a lot of rain & wind, & went out to take some pictures at Cane Bay. Part of me still said "cool!" The power was already out at my cottage (had been since noon) & I thought ok, I can deal with this. I ran to K-Mart before the curfew I had just heard about on the car radio & stocked up on necessities: candles & matches, munchies, a couple of cans of food I could eat without heating, & a bottle of coconut rum. I figured that would get me through the night just fine, curled up in my little cottage with a good book.

However, when the REAL storm hit later in the evening, I was no longer saying "cool!" It was more like OMG those trees are laying flat, the wind sounds like a freight train, the rain is so heavy I can hardly see out the window.When I opened the door a bit, I was hit so hard by the wind, that I was literally shoved back in & realized I was definintely not in charge any more. I thought I could hang in ok, afterall I had my candles & my munchies & my rum. But when I heard a loud crash in my bedroom & went running in to see the window laying across my bed & the wind & rain blowing all over, I wasn't so sure. I eventually battled the window back into the frame, at least wedged it enough to stay in somewhat. At that point I was not so much curled up with that book, as huddled up with that bottle! Of course it blew through & by morning all was fine.

Well, except for the fact that there was no power or water or phone. So, here's what Irene taught me:

I am not a very patient person. Once the "this is cool" turns into serious inconvenience, it's more like "are you kidding??" I work from my computer (have been working here the entire time) & of course that was not going to happen; no Internet, no email even on the iphone. But worse was no water. I'm used to a shower in the morning & being to flush my toilet! I tried to be ok with this, thinking it'll be back today.

It's now Tues and I still have no power or water. I've learned to seek out the spots on the island where I can get a connection, which might mean driving to one area for the computer & another for the phone. I'm getting frustrated.

But I have to say, the people here are teaching me not only patience, but ingenuity, and that's the real lesson in this post. When I sent an email to a friend, whining about feeling grimy & being frustrated, she sent back fabulous & funny tips on how to get a shower & wash my hair that I never would've thought of. It was so cool. I joined my landlord's family (who have been incredibly supportive & helpful) in the evening for their regular social event & found a whole room full of people charging their phones & computers & laughing at each others' stories. None of them had power yet & here they were having a good time & keeping each other going. I realized that being forced to go to public places to get online was actually a good thing!

No, I did not enjoy Irene. I'm still not enjoying the lack of power or water. But, I can deal with it because everybody else is too & all I have to do is ask & someone will have a helpful tip on how to get through it or just a sympathetic ear. And I do still have some of that rum!

Posted : August 23, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 1171
Noble Member

You still have rum left? Now, that is not supposed to happen.


Posted : August 23, 2011 3:13 pm
Marty on STT
Posts: 1779
Noble Member

And Irene was only a piddly TS...wait'll ya see a REAL storm...like Hugo or Marilyn, now THAT'S a storm!

Posted : August 23, 2011 3:21 pm
Posts: 1798
Noble Member

Hopefully it also taught you to board up your windows, or get your landlord to do so. (But when I heard a loud crash in my bedroom & went running in to see the window laying across my bed & the wind & rain blowing all over, I wasn't so sure.)

And opening a door is NOT a good idea during the peak of a storm! (When I opened the door a bit, I was hit so hard by the wind, that I was literally shoved back in & realized I was definintely not in charge any more.)

Finally, the biggest lesson to learn is: better safe than sorry, because these storms don't always act as predicted. TS Irene was a big wake up call for us!!!! It was predicted to pass to the south, and it didn't.

Oh one more bit of advice: pay heed to what Super Dave says on http://www.stormcarib.com He used to be the weather man on Channel 2 and his predictions are usually quite accurate!!!

Posted : August 23, 2011 3:24 pm
Posts: 21
Eminent Member

It taught me too GTFO of St. Croix pronto...Good riddance..

Posted : August 23, 2011 3:30 pm
Exit Zero
Posts: 2460
Famed Member

TSA guy9 -- Why are you still here in the VI complaining? Planes are leaving every day!

Posted : August 23, 2011 5:32 pm
Posts: 8871
Illustrious Member

i hope it taught you to not make like its a joke and take any real threat of a tropical storm to a hurricane seriously. lots of people have hurricane parties and think its all fun and games, what they learn-they can be deadly.

TSAguy9-ditto what exitzero says. i may not love it here but i make the best out of every situation and can have fun in all environments. deal with it or leave.

Posted : August 23, 2011 10:16 pm
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