Friday, September 23, 2005

Hurricane Blog #9: Friday, 8:15 p.m.

About an hour ago, the first drops of rain started to fall. As I write this, we're still getting a very light drizzle, with light gusts of winds. From here, not much of a hurricane so far.

On the Texas-Louisiana border, however, things are getting quite hectic. Heavy rain and winds are hitting Lake Charles, blowing east to west. Over us right now, the clouds are moving north-to-south, blowing out toward the Gulf. That's good news for us for two reasons:

(1) The outer arms of Rita are coming ashore in Louisiana, rotating counter-clockwise around the offshore eye, and by the time those arms brush up against Houston, the winds and rain are pretty much spent.

(2) The north-to-south winds gather up dry air from outside the hurricane path and drag it across us, absorbing quite a bit of the water and wind that is left in those spiraling arms.

My sister in Katy (25 miles due west of downtown Houston) has lost power. For the life of me, I can't figure out how -- the sky looks ugly, but the storm hasn't hit this side of town yet. At this point, we're just waiting to get this show on the road.

That's about all that's going to get on the road. I spoke with my mother in Nashville -- 850 miles away -- and the gas stations are sold out there as well. It appears there is no gasoline in this part of the country.

Meanwhile, by this morning, at least three people had already been arrested for looting. Three kids were rummaging through an evacuated middle school, looking for electronics.

Looters would be well-advised to remember that in Texas, many civilians are licensed to carry concealed weapons. Think about that before you try to break into that pawnshop ...

posted by Gary @ 8:26 PM


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Location: Houston, Texas

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