One of my ealriest memories is of Hurricane Frederick in 1979. I was standing on my front steps watching the tall pines sway in the first winds of the storm. A gust of wind came up and knocked me off of the steps and gave me a cut on the forehead; I was only two and a half at the time, and I still have the scar.
Monday I saw a category 5 hurricane. It was the most devastating thing I have ever seen in my life. I saw gigantic pine trees fall around me like dominoes, cars getting smashed with debris and power lines whipping in the 150 m.p.h. winds.
My family and I are fine. There are still people that I do not know where or how they are. Communication in southern Mississippi is so bad right now. Radio and cell phone towers are demolished. If landline phones are working people can usually only call locally and some are lucky enough to call out of state but not in state.
The heat is still unbearable. Temperatures are in the upper 90s and the heat index is higher. The electricity and water went out in Hattiesburg, MS on Monday morning. Water is not expected to be back in order in Hattiesburg until Labor Day. Electricity will not be back online for another 4 to 6 weeks. Most roads are still impassable. Many buildings are twisted like Frank Gehry designs.
Last night my wife and I evacuated to Arkansas with fellow blogger Al Theisen and his fiancee and composer Marc Ballard. We may return after water is back online.
As of last night we still have not seen anyone working on power lines and FEMA still has not shown up with water.
It is going to get really bad. It has not gotten there yet, but people are not getting water or ice. People on the Mississippi coast and in Louisiana are worse off than we are in Hattiesburg but it is like hell.
Please encourage people to donate money and goods to help the millions of victims of Hurricane Katrina. Because there are literally several million people whose lives have been completely turned upside down by this storm.
Please help these people if you can.
Composer and Hurricane Evacuee