Did You Miss Me?

 Posted by at 12:41 am  Nick's Blog
Oct 112022

Just like a bad rash, or that annoying brother-in-law who keeps showing up to borrow your tools and never returns them, I’m back! Did you miss me? I sure missed all of you!

I appreciate everybody’s patience while we’ve been offline for so long due to Hurricane Ian. Let me give you an update on our hurricane experience.

We had planned to go up to Alabama to visit our son Travis and his wife Geli, but then they came down with COVID even though they were both vaccinated and boosted. They were about over it when the hurricane became a threat, and we probably would have been safe going up there, but we didn’t want to take that chance. And at first, we didn’t think it was going to be that bad here. Boy, were we wrong!

After slamming into the Gulf Coast of Florida, the storm came northeast up the state, and the models kept showing it going north of us. Then the models changed and showed it coming south of us. And then, at the last minute, the hurricane decided to roll right over the top of us. We had a tremendous amount of rain on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 28 and 29, and when we went to bed Wednesday night, the weatherman said the worst of the storm would be hitting us about 5 AM Thursday morning. So we were up and prepared for it, but instead, we had a blue sky, and everything was calm. We didn’t realize it at first, but we were in the eye of the hurricane, and when its back wall hit us, it hit hard.

We lost the cable TV and Internet first, sometime mid-morning on Thursday, and cell phone service became very spotty. Then the power went out early in the afternoon. I’m not going to lie to you. It was a bit nerve-wracking sitting in a manufactured home in the middle of something like that. But we have hurricane-tiedowns, and polycarbonate storm panels on the windows, and additions have been built-on all around the place, so it is pretty sturdy. Even so, there was a time or two when we wondered if we would lose the roof.

When things finally calmed down and the storm blew out to sea, we were very pleased and considered ourselves lucky that we didn’t have one bit of damage at our place. The drainage canal next to our property was running to within about a foot of the top but did not overflow, even though we got 19 inches of rain here in less than 24 hours.

Unfortunately, some of our neighbors in our community of Edgewater and the adjacent town of New Smyrna Beach didn’t fare as well. Some subdivisions had waist-deep water in the streets, and many houses were flooded. Some folks lost everything.

Here in our little subdivision, there were some awnings down, and a couple of small metal storage sheds were destroyed, but all of the homes survived well.

Some of the roads and low-lying areas were flooded, and our fishing dock was underwater. But that’s the worst of it right here where we live.

Our 18-plus years as fulltime RVers, a lot of that time spent dry camping, prepared us well for what we had to face next. Fortunately, the water supply never went down, and it wasn’t oppressively hot. Our two little Honda generators purred right along for five days, keeping our refrigerators going and allowing us to run some box fans to move the air around. But we sure were happy to see the lights come back on late Monday afternoon, no question about that!

It was frustrating that when the power came back on, most of our neighbors had cable television and Internet again, but we didn’t. Phone service was still in and out for several days. Terry and I didn’t realize how connected and dependent we are on modern technology for everything from posting the blog to researching to keeping in contact with friends and family.

Finally, last Saturday morning, a contract worker for Spectrum Cable was here to figure out what was wrong. It didn’t take him long to discover that a cable was down in the thick brush between the property lines and the drainage canal. He said he was not allowed to go in there by company orders, and we would have to clear a path for him. He was from Texas and asked me if there were any alligators in there, and I told that here in Florida, anything bigger than a birdbath could well hold an alligator.

My neighbor Jessie Bolton, who has come to our rescue more times than I can count, came over and cut a path through the jungle-like brush so they could access the pole, and then on Sunday afternoon, another Spectrum worker came out to do the hookup. He was a local man from down in Melbourne, Florida, so he wasn’t too worried about alligators. I will say that the water moccasin we saw down there gave us all a fright, but it slithered away, much to my relief.

So, the only thing we have going on now is a huge pile of brush that Jesse and I hauled out to the street from the path we had to hack through to allow them to access the pole. Life is getting back to normal here, and we’re glad about that!

Thought For The Day – No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  14 Responses to “Did You Miss Me?”

  1. Nick, I am glad you and Terry are ok.


  2. I’m really glad you’re back and that you and Miss Terry survived Ian relatively unscathed!

  3. Nick and Terry,

    Welcome back – and yes we missed you and so glad to hear you are safe and that your home didn’t sustain any damages. What an adventure that was! Who knew your fulltiming years would prepare you to live ‘off the grid’ so to speak during this time.

  4. Glad you kids made it through OK.

  5. I’ve found it a bit irritating that there’s been little, if any, reporting on what happened to the east coast of FL during Ian. I heard from a friend that a couple of piers were wiped out, Flagler being one. I get a paper from the west side (Citrus ) and didn’t see any thing in that. I miss reading it some days so maybe I missed it but as far as national news-it’s all been the BAD news (and yes it was and is) out of the south west. Glad to know you’re all ok and had no damage. Sad others did-hope they’ve gotten some local attention and are getting the help they need.

  6. Thanks for the update and so glad life is getting back to normal.

  7. Delighted you and your home survived without any lasting damage. It looks like Daytona Beach has terrible erosion. We live in a small 5th floor condo directly on the ocean in Cape Canaveral. We watched huge thundering waves, stretching to the horizon and coming close to threatening our dunes for days. It was a beautiful and breathtaking sight in a terrible kind of way. A day later she played nice and looked like a peaceful lake, with hardly any waves at all and small children playing in the sand. She can sure be a changeable lady who likes to show her temper this time of year We’ve lived in the area since 1956 and this hurricane confounded everyone. There was no call for anyone to leave because where would we go? It couldn’t make up its mind where it was going. My brother in Winter Park had it worse than us, he lost part of roof and some trees and the city had some bad flooding. This is one we’ll remember mostly because those winds lasted for what seemed like forever and when we thought the worst was over, we learned like you, it was the eye we were enjoying.

  8. As te eye went over the Sebring area we had 24 inches of rain. Sure, was a wopper.

  9. So happy things are back to normal. We were lucky
    ..just rain and wind in The Villages. No loss of any services.

  10. Sure did miss you Nick! Welcome back, glad that you both and your neighbors came through ok. It’s good to see the blog again, I hope y’all are back to normal soon.

  11. I won’t be surprised to read that you are testing Starlink or some other alternate internet system as a back up. I know you can use a fancy router to load balance between two internet sources, but that might be a bit too complex for you. Glad you are back up.

  12. Thanks for the update!

  13. Glad to see you made it through Ian okay. I’m sure all those years of RV living helped. Stay safe and healthy.

  14. Great news! You have certainly bern through a wringer. But What a mess everywhere else! Happy that you are still able to live and work more normally. Here on the west coast, we are lucky to see two complete drops in our storms while you folks are the extreme opposites there.

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