Friday, September 23, 2005

Planet Houston

As I had blogged about my birthplace eventually getting back to its self as Hurricane Katrina hit, I think about Houston, the place I called home for 14 years, as Hurricane Rita approaches.

My parents still live in Kingwood (a 'burb about 30 miles north of Houston) as my sister and her husband live about 25 minutes away from there. Since they are very high above sea level and about 80 miles away from the shore, they are very wise in staying put. They've boarded up their houses just in case as the prediction is that there may be some power outages, high wind and a few downed trees. The damage may be worse or may be less but I can say is this; I have faith that any damage will be fixable in some form or another. If destruction is really a form of creation, then I won't worry.

Don't think that I'm wishing for mass destruction and shattered and/or lost lives here. Hurricanes happen; just like thunderstorms, flat tires, paper cuts and all other sorts of things that we can never really prepare ourselves for. The importance is to do something and to not blame ourselves for doing what we want to do, consequences and all.

Galveston has been hit by many hurricanes before and I truly believe that the town will regroup following the storm's passing. Yes, this storm, no matter how intense it gets, will pass. I try to explain this philosophy to others but others choose to focus on the frenzy of what might happen. I choose to not drag the waters of despair while others want to bathe in it.

Now it's really easy for me to sit here in Dallas 4.5 hours away from the shoreline and make these observations and act calm. I'm concerned for my family but especially my friends that live closer to shore. Matt works in Galveston and I have no doubt in my mind that he and Kim have evacuated to higher ground. My uncle Bill and aunt Linda have lived in Galveston for a long time and I'm sure they got out OK. Seeing I-45 jammed like sardines from Houston all the way to Ennis (which is 30 miles south of Dallas) is pretty scary to see. Hearing of people driving hours and hours to go a few dozen miles is crazy. Seeing gas stations be out of gas while the ones that have gas be packed is nuts. This is pure panic time, but I choose to stay in an optimistic light while a pessimistic light is on too, but only slightly dimmer.


Matthew said...

Kim and I both drove to my parents' house in Kingwood on Wednesday night. The normally one-hour drive took three hours. I thought it was going to be much longer than that. Luckily for us, the people stuck on 59 didn't know Humble's many backroads. Our new apartment in Webster is almost 30 miles from Galveston. We're on the third floor and don't anticipate flooding - only broken windows and a leaky roof. My job is another story. I work on the first floor in Galveston on the bayside. I expect to be working from home indefinitely. Kim and I have a hotel reservation in Austin and tickets for ACL Festival, but we don't feel like sitting in traffic for more than 12 hours and risk running out of gas. They better offer a refund. Long story short (too late), Kim and I are okay and are bracing for the worst. Lates.

Eric Grubbs said...

Thanks for the heads-up and glad to hear from you.