A gorgeous full moon hung over the Atlantic Ocean at nightfall this Sunday as I began my second walk of Ellie dawg since a harrowing return Thursday night from a full week my wife Allyne and I spent in what we thought would be safe shelter from Hurricane Florence's assault on the Carolinas.
With Nature displaying such beauty atop the beachscape, it was difficult to comprehend the reality that at this very moment, hundreds, maybe thousands, of people were sandbagging their homes or heeding warnings to flee them as Florence delivers fresh rounds of flooding in coastal Carolina.
It has been flooding now for 11 days and in some areas, such as nearby Conway, S.C., rivers will not crest until later this week. Schools will be closed for another week. The level of flooding exceeds previous records set by Hurricane Matthew two years ago.
My own family is fortunate in being safe so far from the flood waters.
Our chosen evacuation zone -- Richmond, Va., our former long-time home -- turned out not to be exempt from the furies unleashed by Hurricane Flo. A few days after our arrival, Richmond experienced an unprecedented outbreak of tornadoes spun up by the hurricane -- easily more than a dozen -- causing property destruction and the loss of a life (a good man who was trying to help others get out of danger's path). On the way to dinner at a nice restaurant, the Greek Tavernas, we headed through torrential rain and winds suggesting tornado nearby. And at the exact moment we entered the eatery, a huge lightning strike knocked out the computers, meaning all customers had to pay cash. Despite that, we felt welcome.
Our guardian angel was an Aunt Sarah's waitress, Vicki, who greeted us warmly every day and chatted with us about family and conditions back home. She was like a family member herself by the time we departed Richmond. Wish Vicki could join us for a nice seafood dinner tomorrow as we celebrate our 52nd wedding anniversary.
Meanwhile, our prayers go to all people who have suffered and are still being hurt by this hurricane that won't go away.
© Robert Gray Holland (2018)
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