Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Hurry up and wait

Well, I am still in California. Specifically, we are still on the street in Sunnyvale, a block from the Elks, although we actually turned around and moved to the opposite side of the street yesterday, to comply with the 72-hour rule.

The 6-am call never came yesterday, and after checking on line to see that Felicia's track had again been moved north to Maui/Oahu (it had been moved back down towards the big island Sunday night), the system had been downgraded to a depression, and landfall had been moved back to Tuesday afternoon, I emailed the DOC for an update.

Unsurprisingly, the decision was made to hold off on sending any more personnel until after landfall, to see if there would really be any need (I am guessing there will not be). So we carried on somewhat with our lives here, although I have kept my bag packed and ready, and we opted to stay here an easy block away from the Sunnyvale lodge just in case. Of course, here it is Tuesday afternoon, and I still can't unpack -- landfall is now expected this evening, and we still need to wait to see if there will be any mudslides, wind damage, or what-not. I don't expect now to get the word to stand down until tomorrow morning sometime. Looks like another night here on the street.

We enjoyed another nice dinner last night with some local friends, and tonight we will catch up with our old "motorcycle gang" at the regular Tuesday night dinner. Assuming I am not deployed to Hawaii, we have plans to go water skiing this weekend with our nieces up at Bass Lake, and, having thus made it 120 miles out of the bay area, we will just continue eastward from there next week, probably via Yosemite National Park and US-6 through Nevada. That gives us merely another three days here to wrap up visits and errands. Although I have to say, we are really enjoying the temperate weather, and will be sorry to leave it behind.

We had a conference call today with our Red Cross leadership in DC, wherein we learned that this July was the first one in nearly a decade where no alert team was deployed. It has been, thankfully, an incredibly slow hurricane season this year, in sharp contrast to the recent past. By this time last year, we had already been deployed a full month, and would remain deployed continuously for another three. The downside, of course, is that with no disasters in the news, donations are also not forthcoming, and so money is very tight. Also, there's a bunch of disaster operations people in DC on the edges of their chairs, just waiting for something to happen. We are very happy to be unpaid volunteers -- we get to just carry on with our lives until something actually does happen.

I've managed to catch up and clear out a lot of my project backlog, and Odyssey seems to be just humming along right now. And fixing a bunch of things on our friend's 13 year old car served as a good reminder that every vehicle has its problems, and our 24 year old bus does not really have any more than its fair share. With a little luck and timing, I will be able to clean all the roof air conditioner condensers before we head back into the heat -- one backlogged project I have yet to tackle here.

Photo by macropoulos


  1. If you head for Bass Lake this weekend it should be VERY nice. The past couple days haven't been to my liking but the weekend looks great. Wish I was a bit closer to there so I could see you both. --Donna

  2. @Donna: We'd love to see you, too! Maybe next time we pass through. Or in Baton Rouge :-)


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