Friday, September 05, 2008

a day in the life - tropical storm hanna edition - part one

from time to time, i've been asked to share my experiences as the general manager of a hotel. so, i'm thinking, now that i'm *stuck* here for the next 24 hours or so, this could be a good time to try it out!!

fyi, TS Hanna is posing no specific threat to life and limb here. if this was a major storm, i would probably be in my car heading inland. i am not in harms way as type these words. i repeat, i am safe and sound. well, okay, i'm safe. the sound part has yet to be proven...

6:10 am
alarm goes off and i promptly turn it off. school has been cancelled for the day (some of the schools are used as emergency shelters). they're also concerned about the buses running this afternoon in heavy rains and/or wind. so they made the decision last night to go ahead and cancel schools. but, where was i? oh, that's right, sleeping in.

7:18 am
time to get up and prepare for moving over to the hotel. our house is about 9 miles inland from the hotel, so no real threat of damage here. for this storm, at least. we spent wednesday and thursday evenings "battening down the hatches." are windchimes considered "hatches?"
first cup of coffee while i spend twenty minutes watching The Weather Channel. nothing new. really glad jim cantore is up in the Outer Banks. have a feeling he and his crew would be a little high maintenance.

7:45 am
wash up dishes, start packing overnight bag. wake jack, who's overly excited to spend the night at the hotel(!) take trash to the curb, start dishwasher, note big raindrops beginning to fall on the driveway. ugh - it is HUMID!

8:10 am
start thinking i really should be getting to the hotel, as it tends to be a little crazy during storms. "voluntary evacuations" have been issued for all of the beach communities. a "voluntary evacuation" is the local governments way of covering their rearends. hardly anyone will evacuate. unless they think that camping out at the Hampton Inn is an evacuation.

8:40 am
load up four(!) overnight bags. no use convincing jack that he does not need every. single.stuffed animal from his bedroom. they're coming along, too. head into town. there is a light rain that makes it necessary to run windshield wipers. oh, wait, now we don't need them. it will be like this all morning.
mat calls from bald head island. he will cross back to mainland on the noon ferry. debating whether or not to stay at the hotel or stay at the house. i say the house is fine. i will NOT be fine if i have the hotel AND jack to manage alone for the next 24 hours!

9:00 am
second cup of coffee. hampton inn style/robust. jack raids the complimentary breakfast buffet. i touch base with my front desk team, maintenance, housekeeping. all preparations are just about done - the pool is closed, the flags are down, sandbags ready, walkie talkies charged. the sun is shining. decide to eat a bagel before moving our *luggage* upstairs.

9:45 am
unload the car and make our way onto the elevator. by the time we reach our room on the second floor, rain and wind are pelting the window on the east side of the hotel. jack and i give each other a high five that we unloaded the car just in time. we make our way downstairs. ten minutes later, the sun is shining.


linda said...

I hope this narration continues because I'm truly interested. We Californians haven't ever experienced anything like this. I'll stick with the fairly mild earthquates every few years vs. evacuations.

carlo said...

so awesome that you are covering this for your devoted readers.

i am enjoying it since i know you are safe

jim c comments made me laugh-- so true, i'll bet! :)

michelle said...

This is such a great idea, Lelly. I'm reading in reverse order!