Don't be surprised if you see posts appearing with long-past dates. I'm gradually collecting some of my old writings into this blog.
Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, October 3, 2004 at 8:53 am | Edit
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One consequence of having had to keep a weather eye out for hurricane news is that our television set was on quite a bit recently. I'll save my comments on the generally repulsive nature of what we saw for another time.

There were actually a couple of shows that qualified as interesting enough (and un-raunchy enough) to keep my attention for a while. One of these was Medical Investigation, which we found on NBC from 10 to 11 p.m. Friday nights. I can be grateful that the hour is so late, as I'm less likely to be tempted to seek it out. For it is just the kind of story I love: a mystery, and a medical mystery at that. In fact, in at least two of the stories so far the plots were lifted directly from the wonderful—and true—medical detective stories of Berton Roueché(More)
Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, October 2, 2004 at 9:31 pm | Edit
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Thanks to a great deal of help from Jon Daley, I am venturing into the world of the Blog. It sounds rather like something from an old science fiction movie. My first step in having an online presence was the making of my home page, which I greatly enjoy, and which I've used—among other purposes—to keep friends and family informed of our adventures during Florida's recent hurricanes. I could be content simply to keep expanding my webpages; there certainly is a lot to learn and much that can be done. However, what I really like about the blog software is its ability to let other people add comments. Since I hope this will become a forum for the exchange of ideas as well as information, it seems a worthwhile project.

I am only splashing in the shallows of these waters as yet, so please be patient with problems and changes as I set out on this new adventure. (More)

Posted by sursumcorda on Friday, October 1, 2004 at 9:34 pm | Edit
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Friday, October 1, 2004. 7:30 a.m. Again, I don’t know who gets the credit for this; it appears to be circulating unattributed.

A few random notes: (More)
Posted by sursumcorda on Friday, October 1, 2004 at 7:30 am | Edit
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Tuesday, September 28, 2004. 1:00 p.m.  The power is still on, and we are all happy about that. Porter is currently up on the roof, making repairs, and is glad that the pool is looking better this morning. Jonathan, Heather and I have a date to see some friends this afternoon, but we hope to get in some yardwork and a swim, too. Jonathan is not yet very helpful with the yardwork, but makes up for it by being incredibly cute as he tries to handle the rake. And he really enjoys the swimming part afterwards.
Posted by sursumcorda on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 at 1:00 pm | Edit
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9:15 p.m. We didn’t get our swim in. We were just finishing in the front yard when Porter came home. Since we had discovered that we were cooler working outside than we had been sitting inside, Porter decided it was time to take the rest of the plywood down so we could open the windows. During the process Jonathan discovered a stream of water in the gutter and got his shoes soaking wet. Leaving him (with his mother watching, of course) to splash and play in his naked glory, I took his shoes in to clean them up. While I was inside, the phone rang. The cordless phone rang. Wait a minute...the cordless phone doesn’t work unless we have POWER! Sure enough, the power was on; our best guess was that it came on around 6:30. Twenty-nine and a half hours without power this time. We welcomed the return of light and A/C and computing power with 100% gratitude, but also with the usual small percentage of wistfulness, as there is something magical about being without electricity. Hot, and dark, and sometimes frustrating, but also, in a way, fun. Not that I’m in any hurry for more of that fun for a while!

Porter made a trip to Home Depot tonight, as we lost enough shingles this time to require some temporary roof repair. I’m glad the store was open; when Heather and I went out, we found most stores closed, including two of our three grocery stores, and most gas stations.

Jon made it safely home. In fact, his was the call that let us know the power was back.

Jonathan is really happy to have the air conditioning back on; he was one hot and sweaty kid! While the power was off, he’d kept staring at the lights with a puzzled look, as if he couldn’t understand why we didn’t turn them on. When the power came back on, he still focused on the lights; this time with a big smile.

Time for a shower and a night’s sleep. Good night, all!
Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, September 27, 2004 at 9:15 pm | Edit
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Monday, September 27, 2004. 4:30 p.m. I apologize for the long delay between updates. Just after 1:00 yesterday afternoon, as the storm was nearly over, we lost power. In fact, we are still without power, making it the longest outage for us of the three hurricanes. Porter is working from a friend’s house, the friend having both power and high-speed connection to share.

The airport opened at noon today, and we took Jon to the airport where we assume he had no trouble catching his flight, though we haven’t heard yet. We chose to take the longer, but mostly-expressway route, as uncontrolled intersections made the other roads difficult to travel. With each hurricane we get better, however: many of the important intersections had working lights, powered by generators.

Jonathan is still enjoying himself, though he is anxious for the pool to be open again. I put some chlorine in, and when it has had a chance to dissipate we may indulge. It looks a little gross, with pump and filter not working, but it should be safe and cool. When they ask Jonathan what he thinks of Florida, he’s going to say, “The people are nice, but it sure is hot and dark there.”

I’m not sure when my next update will be. We’re fine, but if you need to get in touch with us, phone is more reliable at this point than e-mail.

We’re off to do some yardwork. It will make the pool and/or cold shower feel that much better, and help justify all the really soft ice cream we have to eat.
Posted by sursumcorda on Monday, September 27, 2004 at 4:30 pm | Edit
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11:30 a.m. Still here, still fine, still have power, wind is anything but still. Impressive gusts, but sustained winds aren’t bad. We jump mostly when a gust pulls the trap door to the attic open and slams it down, or when a metal piece of the chimney cap buckles and snaps back. Daytona Beach is getting pounded by one of the outer bands, while the center of the hurricane heads for Tampa. Take a look at the satellite picture to see how Jeanne is spread over the whole state and more.

I don’t know where this came from originally—it seems to be one of those things that arise spontaneously from the e-mail murk. But there’s a lot of truth in it!
Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, September 26, 2004 at 11:43 am | Edit
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9:45 a.m.  We should be at church now, but storm—not to mention curfew—made the 40-minute trip an unwise venture. We did, however, have a great time of singing hymns with Heather at the piano, Jon and Porter singing, Jonathan exploring the living room, and me singing while running back and forth between the living room and the kitchen, so that the lemon-blueberry pancakes didn’t burn.
Posted by sursumcorda on Sunday, September 26, 2004 at 9:45 am | Edit
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11:30 p.m. Okay, now it feels as if I’m preparing for a hurricane: I’m baking a pound cake. I think the Daleys are asleep, but Porter and I are still up, doing odds and ends (like baking, and getting the hall ready for occupation) while keeping track of the storm. It looks as if it will hit here sooner than expected, maybe about 4 a.m. I understand one of the greatest concerns is that so many people have just given up. Like one of our neighbors, who didn’t bother to put up his plywood this time. Compliance with evacuation orders is much, much lower, with many fewer people going to shelters. This despite the fact that the news commentators are saying, “Think the intensity of Charley with the duration of Frances.”

I was worried about Ivan, but Jeanne was weak and wandering for so long that I had all but forgotten about her. However, as we learned from The Hobbit:

It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.
Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, September 25, 2004 at 11:30 pm | Edit
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10:30 p.m.  Just after writing that, I heard some wind gusts, but we still don’t expect much till tomorrow.
Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, September 25, 2004 at 10:30 pm | Edit
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9:30 p.m. Thank you again for your prayers—don’t stop just because my updates aren’t quite as frequent as before. It’s harder to find time for computer work when there’s a lovely baby to play with!


I feel simultaneously the most prepared and the least prepared of all the hurricanes. Most prepared because we get better each time, and much of the work was already done. Least because this is the first time I haven’t been running around frantically, getting things done. I suppose it helps that I did some of that (housekeeping, shopping) in preparation for the Daleys’ visit. I didn’t bake this time, however. Yet. Maybe tomorrow if we have power.

Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, September 25, 2004 at 9:30 pm | Edit
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10:30 a.m.  Porter and Jon just finished putting the plywood back up. It goes much faster when you have two strong workers—and when you already have the boards cut and the holes drilled! They also did not put up all the boards; we’re waiting for more data before decided what to do about the “safer” side of the house. I’d say the house looks weird—but we had the plywood on for so long that it actually doesn’t seem strange at all. It’s no good keeping it up all season, however; there are other risks in life besides hurricanes, and having the windows all boarded up is not good in case of fire, as has been tragically shown in Florida already this month.

I think the WMAG is going down for a nap....
Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, September 25, 2004 at 10:30 am | Edit
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Saturday, September 25, 2004. 8:00 a.m.  The Daleys arrived safely last night. Although at the time of Frances I assured them that they did not want to be here if a hurricane came through, we’re very glad to see them! Last time they moved out of the hurricane’s way. We would be very grateful if the hurricane did the moving this time.

The car seat was ready and waiting to receive the WMAG, who promptly fell asleep. After returning home, we followed suit.
Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, September 25, 2004 at 8:00 am | Edit
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Friday, September 24, 2004. 2:45 p.m. Back from a morning marathon shopping trip. Not particularly hurricane-related, though it's hard to resist picking up a few more supplies: an extra flashlight, some batteries.... Just lots of errands that I wanted to do today and tried to fit in before everyone else decided to go to the store. I was pretty successful. It was crowded, but not overly so, and certainly not like last time. Now our library books will ride out the hurricane, if it comes, safely in the library. Now I have what I need to complete Heather's birthday present (except for one piece of information, which is trying to find its way out of Janet's busy life). We're celebrating her birthday while she's here, even though it's a month away yet. Hmmm, by that logic, maybe we should celebrate Jonathan's 10-month birthday, which just passed.

Porter decided that putting up the plywood again can wait till Saturday. We want the house to look a little more welcoming for Heather's first time home in three years. And, not coincidentally, by Saturday we will have someone here who is young, male, and strong. :) Oh, wait. We'll have TWO additional people here who are young, male, and strong.

By the way, Happy 12th Birthday, You-Know-Who!
Posted by sursumcorda on Friday, September 24, 2004 at 2:45 pm | Edit
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