Surviving Hurricane Ike

So, this past weekend, I was busy trying to survive my first hurricane. I've been living in Houston most of my life (24 of my 32 years) and have never encountered a the force that is...the hurricane. The year before we moved here, Houston and Galveston were devastated by Hurricane Alicia (1983). Rita, a 'cane people thought for sure was going to hit Houston, only ended up hitting surrounding cities like Beaumont. Gustav, earlier this month, skipped H-town, also. We were affected by Allison (2001?), but that was a tropical storm. That leaves, Hurricane Ike.

I know I was a little nervous about what would happen. Friday, we continued to prepare and make sure everything was ready while watching the news. We watched as the waves crashed over Galveston's Seawall, built to protect Galveston. Seeing the water go over the seawall hours before Ike was to hit was enough to convince me that Ike was something serious. I'd heard that the 'cane was almost the size of Texas!

We started getting wind Friday evening. A little before midnight, the winds picked up. We fell asleep for about 2 hours, then woke up at about 2:30 a.m. The hurricane had hit, and boy, did we feel it. There's a pine tree in our front yard (in front of my bedroom window, by the way). As the winds blew, the pine tree bent here and there. We thought for sure that it wouldn't last; that it would snap and fall. I was a little nervous because if the tree were to fall backward, it would crash into my room and if it were to fall to the left, it would crash on our cars. But it's still standing, thank God. The electricity went out at about 1:00 a.m., so, we had flashlights and candles. My mom, dad, sis, and I just listened (and sometimes watched) as the hurricane did its job. No electricity = no air conditioner, so, we were hot throughout the day. At one point, when we were sure it was safe, we opened the windows to let the wind blow (this was after we were sure Ike was gone). Eventually, that wasn't enough. I feel for those who are still out of electricity. Ours came back on at about 4:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon. Some of our neighbors and family members are still without electricity.
When we rode around to see what Ike had done, we realized just how blessed we were. The only damage we'd gotten was part of the backyard fence being knocked down.

We went around the neighborhood and saw people with most of their fence damaged, shingles torn off the roof, trees (I'm not talking about small trees either) knocked down. One person had a damaged car because the basketball goal had fallen on it. We had lots of shingles in our yard (front and back), but the shingles did not belong to us. Our roof survived. The roof of the person who lived behind us had damage. This is a short vid I took while riding around the neighborhood.

I realize that my fam and I were blessed. We've only got a damaged fence. It could've been a whole lot worse. Our house could've ended up like so many of our neighbors' houses or, worse, like those who live in Galveston. We didn't lose anyone to Hurricane Ike and our house was not flooded. I am truly blessed. Those who were devastated by Hurricane Ike are in my prayers. Kinda makes me feel grateful for what I have and appreciate it more.