When dealing with crisis there’s a delicate space between between joy (celebration) and guilt perhaps never more understandable than the moment when power is restored to your home, yet you are thinking of those still waiting; those still suffering.
Power returned today to casa del Sundance thanks to assistance from three Michiganders, two West Virginians, one Pennsylvanian, and a salty fellow from Gainesville Florida -super smart starfish thrower- with a seriously well designed, and custom engineered, narrow profile track and bucket lift.
Darn I wish I had taken a picture of that gear (phone was dead). It looks a little like this, but is smaller (about size of mini-bobcat); compact and seriously purposeful. Incredible build and functionality with terrain tracks, generator and a narrow profile; super maneuverable.
With this gear we’re able to squeeze down the easement space between rows of powerless houses, and put the bucket operator into tight spaces clearing fallen trees from under, around, and over the space were power line crews need to travel. Effectiveness is quadrupled.
♦More fuel is now available. This is a major improvement. Approximately 50 to 75% of gas stations now seem generally well supplied and it doesn’t take more than a few drive-bys to find fuel. Stores beginning to resupply, and more people returning to SWFL.
I’m actually amazed at how many residents evacuated, then stayed away for so long. The neighbor to neighbor communication seems to be the contact to bring them back; with many choosing to stay out until power is restored. This is significantly different from prior Hurricane impact events. Usually people return quickly (48-72 hrs); this time a much larger percentage of the population choose to remain in a holding pattern (wherever they evacuated to) awaiting information.
Cell phone service is still sporadic, but starting to expand. The damaged infrastructure for internet service is going to take a while longer to restore. Perhaps it’s a good thing (I think so) because it has somewhat detached people from their devices and more person-to-person contact is taking place. Optimistically I think events like this show everyone finding we have more in common than not.
Family will be returning later today and I’m working on clearing up the chaos. Often we become more focused when we put small goals in front of ourselves as targets. Mine is for my family to have trouble spotting the seams in the restoration of things familiar. If they can’t tell, that’s success. It might seem like a silly goal in the grand scheme of things, but it’s mine – and keeps my gaze from the whirl around everything chaotic.
After catching up with missed hugs; we’re headed back to the center of the state because there’s a whole bunch of decent folks that need wellness checks and some pairs of hands.
The ongoing word amid teams that have come out of the Florida Keys (for resupply) are all about the long-term restoration process. Power first, then comes communication, food and water resupply, then debris removal. Tough folks there that need our prayers and our hands. They’ll get both – for the long haul.
Sorry for not updating last night. We only had the bucket lift for 24 hours before it was scheduled elsewhere, we kept working through the night. I fell asleep in the bathtub.
Love to all. So much to be thankful for. I snapped this picture yesterday. God can sure message the important stuff much better than me…