I’d had such a stressful week that the warnings about Hurricane Harvey washed over me. Despite the evacuation images I saw on TV and the scrolling flash flood warnings at the bottom of news broadcasts, I’d burned the candle at both ends, scrambling to work on too many projects at once. I’d temporarily forgotten how close I lived to the impending disaster.
By Thursday, reality had finally sunk in that a natural disaster neared my doorstep. Coupling that with my inner turmoil, my nightly prayer included a plea for God to dissipate that hurricane. I repeated that same plea on Friday night. Yet Hurricane Harvey kept thrashing the coastal communities along the Gulf of Mexico.
During my weekly Saturday morning call to Mom, who lived in NC with Dad, she confessed the irrational belief that since Dad’s Uncle Harvey was a gentleman, she didn’t think Hurricane Harvey would do much harm. We both laughed at the silliness of it. Plus, I’d been wishfully thinking the same thing.
Yet, my experience with Harvey began with a cooling relief of the triple-degree weather, starting around Wednesday. Then a constant rain on Friday night and into Saturday, which continued on Sunday, causing flash floods around town. I’d ventured to one or two places during the day, but absolutely stayed home at night.
One of the silver linings to being near an impending natural disaster was hearing from long-lost relatives and friends. A few just texted me to confirm that I was OK. One friend who I hardly ever hear from except around Christmas, called and we gave each other updates, but it could’ve been just yesterday when we last spoke.
Another friend had invited me to watch the Game of Thrones season finale at her house, but as a consolation prize, we actually TALKED on the phone. How retro in this day and age of social media and texting!
Nothing close to the widespread devastation of Houston occurred in Austin. Besides the flash floods, which dried up after a few days, I recently noticed cars lining up at a gas station. At some stations, they’d run out of the cheap gas and prices sharply rose due to a shortage and Labor Day weekend.
Just a few weeks prior to this hurricane, The States had reacted against white supremacist violence Charlotte. In contrast, we here in Texas show the true spirit of being Americans by helping one another during these struggling times. Amidst all the talk of removing Confederate statutes, some have suggested replacing them with the contemporary heroes who have helped Hurricane Harvey survivors.
I’m not sure about any of that, but I’m so happy that far more of us believe and act upon cooperating and helping one another rather than acting out in hate and violence.