Friday, September 12, 2008


"Sure, I've slapped Tina... There have been times when I punched her to the ground without thinking. But I never beat her."~Ike Turner

Hurricane Ike is about to pound Texas Friday evening. It's a huge hurricane, as it's affecting the whole Gulf coast, from Florida across Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana to Texas! Picture Europe, and then picture how Ike is big enough to cover half the European continent. It's that big and getting bigger!

I had seen my friends off to their return flight back to Arizona. They joked that I should come with them, but I could tell they were worried. I told them I'd be fine. Besides, I'm a couple of miles from the coast and I live in an area that doesn't get flooded. And Ike has shifted and is now headed for Houston and Galveston. I've lived and work in those areas before, and some of those areas are prone to flooding. I've been keeping contact with some friends in Houston and Galveston, and some have all ready fled to higher ground and further inland. The rest have bunked down and are preparing for the worst.

The smart people have paid attention and evacuated. Some of the heavily populated areas of the coast are only 5 ft above sea level. The surge (or rise in sea level) from Ike is going to range from 10 to 20 ft. That means two story houses will be flooded. The national weather service has issued warnings that those who choose to remain in low lying areas will face certain death. Even now, homes in Florida and Alabama are already lost to the sea. And this is before the severe winds reach land and rip off rooftops and blow down walls.

I grew up in a hurricane prone coast, so I'm pretty aware of the dangers that come with hurricanes. I can always tell newcomers or people who've never been in hurricanes are the ones who like to live right on the water. Sure the view is beautiful, and everyone loves the beach. But unless you've money to throw away or looking for a spectacular way to die, I wouldn't recommend living by the water, especially in a hurricane prone coasts.

When I first moved to Texas, a hurricane followed 2 weeks later! I didn't leave then. I figured, 'Dang it! I done drove 27 hours to get here and I've just finished unpacking! I ain't packing back up and leaving!' And I stayed. In fact, I've been through 4 hurricanes that I can recall. You pay attention to the weather forecast and you plan accordingly. Now, I've never had to evacuate, but that's because I've never lived in a flood prone area. If I did, you better believe I'd've packed and moved on quickly.

So, tomorrow, since I'm not working and most places are closed, some friends and I are going to head down to the beach. First, we have to get past the cops enforcing mandatory evacuations along the coast. We plan to rendezvous at my place first, then strike out before the sun comes up. We just want to check things out--maybe do a little surfing if the waves are great :) But nothing too crazy. Hurricanes are neither good nor bad; they're just a force of nature. Sometimes, you get a little bit of good with the bad. Sometimes, when things get bad, you just got to keep on rollin'. And sometimes, you have to fight back, and learn to walk away.

“I never beat Tina, but if I did, and, I never did…but, if I did…and, I’m here to tell you that I never ever did, but, if I did, look how good she turned out.”~Ike Turner

UPDATE 12 Sept 2008 Fri 10:00 a.m. :

When we first got to the beach, the sun was just barely rising and the waves were great! We caught some really good ones and had some awesome rides! But within like 3 hours, the waves started to get really rough, and that's when we decided to pack it in.

I took some fotos of the changes that took place so quickly. Here are some Hurricane Ike effects pics:

(Click on pic or Right Click Then Open in New Tab to enlarge)

This is the skies over Padre Balli Park this Friday morning--Corpus Christi, Tx. If you look at the waves of clouds in the background, that's actually part of Hurricane Ike's reach! Those high altitude clouds are the long arms of Hurricane Ike, still almost 200 miles away from the shore!

The waves were great at first, but within 3 hours, it got really rough and dangerous. The shoreline was being swallowed up by the sea. Check out the rough waves!

Bob Hall Pier got pounded by waves. The Pier is a great place for fishing and surfing. But surfers beware, some angry anglers (frustrated fishermen) will throw stuff (i.e. bait) at surfers when they think the surfers are scaring away the fish! If ya can't catch a fish, it's because you suck, not because the surfers are there!

Here's a compilation of the Nueces County Parks and Recreation Padre Balli Office. The blue building in the left side is where we get parking and camping permits. The flooded area is actually a campsite! See the benches and gazebos overrun with water?

And where is all this water coming from? From the surge of powerful waves that have broken through the sand dunes and are forcing their way inland! The sea kept coming in faster and the waves were getting bigger and stronger. That's when we decided to leave the beach and head back inland. And this was only this morning! The hurricane doesn't hit land til this evening. We needed to leave anyway before the bridges and roads to the mainland were overtaken by the sea!

We've discussed hanging out again later tonight, and maybe the possibility of taking more storm pics. Though it's exciting, if the winds and rains get really bad, I sure as hell ain't gonna be out there taking pictures!


  1. YAY!! FIRST!

    The force of nature hey.

    Good luck with the surfing.

  2. I should imagine you're used to being bitch-slapped.

  3. I misread that first line of quote and thought it read, "I never beat Tara". Heh.

    Anyway, my brother and his family live in Houston, but they are now safely in Austin with the in-laws. I hope their house is okay, but more importantly, they're okay.

    Have loads of fun at the beach! Catch some waves.

  4. Ike is such an appropriate name for it, isn't it.

    Be careful out there but if you get there. Be sure to take loads of photos too.

    I know we all appreciate your beach photos.

  5. Are you serious about the beach? Please be careful. It's true that people learn to live with whatever crazy weather is in their vicinity. I can deal with blizzards, but I would be freaked out by any sort of flooding.

  6. I would appreciate your beach photos more if they included shots of you skinnydipping.

  7. Tatas, thanks! Nature forced us to run away after enjoying the waves for a bit!

    MJ, only in moments of passion.

    Tara, ha! ha! It's my favorite Ike quote. I was like, what the heck does Ike define as spousal abuse?

    I'm so glad to hear your brother and family are safe in Austin. Austin is a great city--totally different vibe from Houston. But all major Texas cities are fun because they're so different and exciting! Your family is going to be all right in Austin.

    CP, Ike sure is a fitting name! I feel like Tina Turner--without the hair, the boobs, and short shiny dress and heels; well, we do have great legs, Tina and I. I sure did take some pics!

    Snooze, the beach was fun for a little while, but then came time to get away before it was too dangerous! You're so right about people adapting to their regional weather hazards. I've been in one blizzard, and it was not fun when we were stuck indoors for 3 days! And I was told it was a minor blizzard!

    MJ, no skinny dipping this time; Ike wasn't nice and easy...and he was gonna do the finish rough

    *starts doing Proud Mary dance*

    This is the way we do "proud mary"

    And we're rolling, rolling, rolling on the river

  8. What a great report..very's amazing what you can get used to isn't it?

    Where I live there is a huge Floodway to divert the Red River when it peaks in the Spring, we get a few violent Thunderstorms and the odd Tornado in the Summer, and a couple of awesome Blizzards in the Winter...
    but none of these Forces of Nature seem as scary as having to endure a seaside Hurricane or an Earthquake.

    When I watch the News I am bewildered by people who build these gargantuan luxury homes that get pounded every year? especially out on what appear to be sandbars!

    Are Anglers tossing bait at Surfers trying to attract Bull Sharks? That's the dumbest thing I've heard in a very long time.

  9. and somebody needs to kick Ike Turner in the nuts..really hard!
    What an ass.

  10. Yikes!

    I'm sure you got pounded good.

    Although I'm saddened to see none of those photos.

  11. Donnnnn, you're right about the regional natural forces we get used to. Although, I was in an earthquake once, but because there were no tall buildings or concrete structures, it was kind of fun having the ground vibrate for a few minutes! Of course, it might've been a different story if I was in a major city!

    Those people with the large homes actually do build them on sandbars! Sandbars formed during the last major hurricane! They don't get any pity from me. It's a harsh lesson, but they either learn from it or keep on suffering!

    The bait is one of the better items tossed at surfers. Other people actually throw metal pails or tackle boxes!

    As for Ike, his cocaine use led him to kick the bucket; dude died from an overdose...Tina kicked his sorry a$$ before she left him!

    CP, we rode on top of those waves til we were satisfied and overcome with exhaustion. Then we left before we could get trapped into something more serious! ;)

  12. Thank you for posting the photos of the clouds and the increasingly aggressive waves! I know that those hurricanes and other weather elements can be dangerous and sometimes deadly, but I can't help to be amazed at the photos of a storm approaching. I've taken tons of photos of our skies getting dark and threatening. One time I actually caught a few lightening streaks on camera when we went to Arizona.

  13. Tara, you're welcome! And thanks for the compliments. Fotos of on coming storms are fascinating and exciting because you know it's dangerous but still awe inspiring! That's so cool you got pictures of lightning!

  14. Well there is nothing like a good ride and collapsing of exhaustion afterwards.


  15. Glad you updated and we know you made it back from surfing! Nature is gorgeous at her wildest. Hope you are hunkered down and safely inside today.

  16. It looks awesome . Keep safe if you go out ther again tonight . I love being out in extreme weather , make ya feel really alive :-)

  17. CP, it's true. All good, fun activities lead to a well deserved rest :)

    Snooze, luckily, we were spared the worst of the storm. It's looking like the day is getting better today for us.

    Beast, we do try to keep safe. And it is fun to be out there to experience extreme weather. And it is a smart thing to stay safe and alive to enjoy another wild weather experience :)

  18. Now I'm a little concerned about you.

    I hope you haven't taken a too serious pummelling by Ike.

  19. CP, I'm fine, thanks. I may enjoy a good adventure; I may be crazy; but I know when it's time to be smart and play it safe. Just a few bruises and scrapes from playing in the waves earlier, but nothing serious.

    I've just been busy checking on my friends who got hit by Ike. Most are safe, small damages, but a few lost everything in the flood waters. Still, they are lucky to be alive. The homes can be replaced. Having my friends alive is more important and they're irreplaceable. I've told a few to come live with me, but they're not leaving their city. It's their home, and they're staying to rebuild and restart their lives. It's part of living along the coast. You deal with hurricanes as best you can.

  20. Fascinating stuff on a first-hand basis about what it's like to actually experience this for us northerners who only have cold, snow, mosquitoes, flooding and tornadoes to worry about.

    Seriously, with Katrina and all those big ones that hit every year it seems, I've often wondered what that's really like.

    Looks scary. Thanks for the up close and personal look, including the pix!

  21. WW, thanks! It's kind of interesting what people will put up with where they live. Given a choice, I'd much rather sweat than freeze! But I've friends who'd rather be in blizzards than hurricanes.

    But like any natural weather phenomenon, we learn to live with it. The smart people pay attention and heed warnings and build according to conditions. The not so smart ones like to think and act like they're stronger than nature...and boy is it embarrassing to have nature crush them, if nature let them live, of course. Harsh lesson, but live and learn.