Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Hurricane Watch

Dolly Clouds
Top: watercolor (detail)
Bottom: photo
I tried to post last night, but couldn't get into my blog, for some reason. So, I just fought the computer and watched the weather news on Houston's channel 13, the Weather Channel, and the updates on our local channel KBTX.
Edouard was right out there in the Gulf of Mexico, looking like it was going to strengthen to a category 1 hurricane and go right over Galveston, then head over us. We were warned of winds and heavy rain.
I always tell myself that it couldn't be as bad as the day that I got trapped in a small car in Hearne with flooding from 20 inches of rain, 15 of those in just 3 hours . We didn't have flooding here, then, and most of the rain will run off into the empty lake near us, if we should have a tremendous rain.
I finally fell asleep this morning after I saw on tv that Edouard came ashore east of Galveston, and had not strengthened to a hurricane.
There is rain showing on the radar, coming this way, but we really need it. It has been very hot and dry, which is normal for Texas in summer. Sometimes it takes a hurricane or a tropical storm in the summer before we get any rain at all. A nice, slow, gentle rain, without storms, would be nice.
When Hurricane Dolly hit south Texas, we did get several bands of showers with it, but ended up with only about 1/2 inch of rain. There were some spectacular clouds to the south and overhead that I took a few pictures of. At sunset, there was a touch of yellow and orange in those clouds.
I pulled out a piece of watercolor paper and did some quick cloud studies after I looked at the clouds. I'm not happy with them, though. My yellow is just too strong, for one thing. And it looks even stronger on the computer. (It looks great in a room with the lights off!)
My mother used to tell me that a blind person could see my paintings! Bold, bright, big, strong, thick, heavy, energetic. Small, soft, and realistic things just don't come out of me, without being very tight and controlled to the point of feeling extremely restricted and uncomfortable.
In the small watercolor, I started out trying to study the clouds, but, pretty soon, I just had to let go some and play around, getting loose. I stopped after that one page, because I felt like I wanted to play with the watercolors, more than I wanted to capture the clouds on paper. I decided to let the camera record the clouds for me, for future reference.
This morning, I looked out the window to the south, but there have been no magnificent clouds, so far. It was just cloudy and gray. Maybe there will be more, later, as Edouard moves closer.
At least, it won't be as hot today. It was 105 yesterday, with unusually low humidity. Today, it's only 84, with sunshine.
I loved to watch crashing waves and wind-blown rain, and was one who always wanted to stay and watch the hurricanes and storms when I lived on the coast. I like rainy weather and storms. I feel more awake then. I just want to enjoy them when I know that I am safe! People always had to insist that I evacuate when storms were coming. I knew I was supposed to, but, still, I wanted to see what was happening. Now, at least, thanks to some tv stations, we can watch a little of it through cameras and the eyes of reporters, from the safety and comfort of our homes, or wherever we might be.
I loved to be on the Seawall in Galveston when a norther would blow in, and the waves would come in, splashing over the rocks, then get hit with a blast of north wind, spreading the spray out in a great fan, back toward the incoming waves.
I even liked to be out in a boat, in waves. I never considered that the boat might sink or turn over, until years later!
I miss being able to put my feet in the water, looking for things on the beach, watching the clouds and the waves. At one time, I bought one of those little mechanical things called the wave, that has blue water in it and rocks back and forth to make a wave. The mechanical part broke so I tried to buy a new one. But, the newer ones just look really cheap, but aren't, and aren't nearly as satisfying as those old ones. Besides enjoying it myself, I thought it would be something nice for my art room. I took the old one to let the kids watch, several times, and they were fascinated.
Some storms that hit the Gulf Coast do travel inland and do damage in this area through tornadoes or wind. We don't seem to have much flooding, except in certain areas where the road was dug out instead of being built up or where housing was built on a filled in creek.
I still watch for storms and am not quite sure how to prepare, inland, although I have spent most of my life in the area. I know what to do on the coast. Board up, tape up, pack up, and leave! But, inland, I guess we just have to think of what to do in case of a hailstorm or tornado. I still think that I should load up Daddy's cattle trailer, the pick up truck, the car, and move everything of value to Calvert, like we used to do. We did that with every storm threat. It worked because we knew storms were coming. It won't all fit into our little minivan, along with the family and pets, today.
Well, I think I am going to enjoy a rainy day, later, if it ever gets here.
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