Friday, September 30, 2005

Why do we invite catastrophe, part 3

South Florida Waterways are plentiful and so are the people enjoying them. These photos were taken in Biscayne Bay the last one actually in the intercoastal near by.



  If you've ever anchored your boat on a sandbar at low tide around here, you may recognize the red hamburger/hot dog boat in the first photo, their customers can walk right over in waste deep water for a quick snack.


    BTW ... my pick for J-link du jour is the VIVI awards entry written by Michael. I think he has pretty well summed up the spirit of this community and it's "For the people by the people awards."

     Michael, brilliant as always babe!


Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Why do we invite catastrophe part 2

     The first photo is of the lighthouse on Pompano Beach, the second is of a local tangle of mangrove and the third is a colorful shot of sun and fun, also on Pompano Beach.

     Mmmm ... it doesn't get any better than this.  



         BTW ... my pick for J-link du jour is the VIVI Awards entry found at Patrick's Place. I have not been around as much as usual and I know that many of you have already read the entry but still, I want to leave the link here just encase any of you have not heard about the awards yet.

     Just a reminder ... these awards are designed to help promote the newer journals in our community as well as to celebrate the hard work and success of those most read. Continued updates on the awards will be found at Patricks Place. Let's have some fun with this.



Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Why do we ...

    invite catastrophe by choosing to live in an area plagued by hurricanes? Maybe for the same reason that people choose to live in an area threatened by earthquakes, tornados, avalanches, blizzards, wild fire, drought, flood, mud slides, typhoons, dust storms or terrorist attacks.

     My answer to that question is pretty simple ... I love South Florida and the series of photos I will be posting here in Rain are little examples of why I love it so.


     These are photos I took last week of some of the art deco buildings in South Beach ... more to come.


Sunday, September 25, 2005

A J-Land Birthday ...

Happy Birthday to you  ... Happy Birthday to you ...

Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday ...

Happy Birthday to you Vince! 


    This is a recent photo I took of a Pitcher-Plant flower.

I think it's as unique and unusual as our friend Vince. 



Tuesday, September 20, 2005

De ja vu ...

     Here we go again ... the Key's have been evacuated, the schools are closed in Dade and Broward Counties and the transit system is not running today as Rita like Katrina moves towards us.

     With her strong winds, heavy rains and tornado threats this small storm is expected to later head off into the Gulf to pick up momentum, before deciding where to make landfall along the Gulf Coast.

     I guess if we lived somewhere else, we would just have some other threat to worry about, but ... another Gulf Coast hit, especially near New Orleans may prove to be just to much storm to weather.

     What a mess ... just glad that Dad and Panda are already here and that many of that city's residents have been evacuated and are not just sitting there waiting this time.

    The "From the Big Apple to the Big Easy Katrina Relief Concert" in New York is today ...   Elton John, Fats Domino, Rod Stewart, Jimmy Buffett, Lenny Kravitz, Earth, Wind & Fire, Bette Midler, The Neville Brothers, Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band,The Rebirth Brass Band, Tom Waits, Elvis Costello and more ...   really wish I could be there.


Sunday, September 18, 2005

My voice here has been quiet ...

    Dad and Panda

        Some of you have already figured out that the magnitude of Katrina's devastation and the stories that have followed have overwhelmed me to the point that I've not been able to write even brief updates on our own story that my family and I have been living for 20 days now.

     With so many out there that have lost their lives, their loved ones, their pets ... with all of those young children separated from their mothers, our issues have felt somewhat insignificant in comparison. 

    But ... this is my journal, you are my friends and yes, I do have a story that I hope to eventually be able to tell. For now I'll just say that Dad and Panda are doing well and we are starting to feel hopeful that they will be able to return to New Orleans soon to begin to pick up the pieces of life as they knew it.

    Plans do not include however ... rushing home prematurely to rough it without electricity, clean water and phone service, it's just not necessary. 

     Plus ... my sister and I are sort of enjoying our catching up with Dad time.


Thursday, September 15, 2005

     Overwhelmingly busy ... will be here when I can!

                                *** Coy ***

Tuesday, September 6, 2005

They're here, finally ...

Dad and Panda arrived last night, it's been a long week for all of us, especially Panda ... she looks good (cute as can be) but has not been eating well with all that's going on. They both need to get settled in, looks like it may be quite a while before anyone gets back into New Orleans for anything.

     It's mind boggling to think about being completely misplaced in the world. Your home, your business, everything you own with the exception of the dog, the car and a couple of your favorite shirts,

     One of the hardest things seems to be the fact that communication has been shut off into that area. It's our experience that the cell phone service is available for out going calls but not for incoming which makes locating friends and family that live in the area almost impossible.

     I'm sure that there are online services set up somewhere to help people locate each other, I will be looking into that for him as time permits. If any of you know where we could get started, the information would be appreciated.

     For the moment, off to the gym and then to work, life does go on. Our refugees will be spending the day with my sister at the party store ... still observing Panda and Angie the Doberman, don't want to leave them alone yet until hierarchy is established. Neither of the dogs are aggressive (at all) but ultimately one will become Alfa, it could quite possible be little Panda because she has a voice and that's quite intimidating to Angie who likes things nice and quiet.


Donate now --> American Red Cross

   Donate now -->    Noah's Wish



Saturday, September 3, 2005

Dad, a refugee ...


 Photo from AOL News

     My sister just got a message, it said "your father has been a Hurricane Refugee staying in my home until this morning, Saturday, September 3rd. He is on his way to Florida, you should be hearing from him as soon as he is out of this area and can pick up cell phone reception.

     The message also said "I do have some very urgent news that your father will want to have right away. We just got word this morning that his house along with several others on the same street (named neighbors) are still standing."

     He went on to mention that it was confirmed information by a friend that stayed behind and did not evacuate, this friend had actually gone to Dads house to check on him, knocked on the door and has verified that the house is still standing and everything seemed to be intact!

    This is incredibly good news. It's good news that he is on his way here ... good news that his house is still standing and good news that although he can certainly be considered a refugee, he is not one of the thousands in the photo above. What about them? Are we doing everything we can to make things better for them?


Donate now --> American Red Cross

   Donate now -->    Noah's Wish

     BTW ... my pick for J-link du jour is from an AOL, Katrina News Blog called See the Photos You Took. It's difficult looking at the images of this storms aftermath but not a bad idea that AOL decided to post the photos from it's members there.


Three questions keeping me from sleeping tonight ...


1. Why isn't there an easy to follow evacuation plan for a large number of Americans after a major disaster like this one?

2. Why would they add to the chaos by trying to place 25,000 people in one place, (like Houston)? Dreading the fallout from that decision!

3. Isn't there room and resources in every corner of this country for smaller more manageable numbers of evacuees? I don't think it has to be this hard!

     OK, having said that ... maybe I can go to sleep now!



Friday, September 2, 2005

Outside Of The Flood Zone ...

  Dad and Panda ...

     The good news is they called today ... they're safe, they're dry and staying with a friend outside of the flood zone. 

     I'm sure it's not easy, living without electricity and other conveniences that they're use to, but compared to many of their neighbors ... life is good!

     I'm sure that the days to follow will begin to tell just how much has been lost. Dad owns a Flower Shop in the French Quarter and unfortunately, that's one business that won't be expecting to make a rapid recovery.

          My sister offered him a bedroom at her house and a floral designing job in her Party Decorating business here in South Florida. Obviously it's to soon to even begin considering what comes next, but we wanted to make sure he knows that he doesn't have to stay there in the middle of the madness, unless he chooses to (and like most ... he probably will). 

    It's hard to imagine what it would feel like to know that your home, your business and everything you own that didn't fit in the car, is under water. But ... for now just having food, water and a roof over their head seems like enough. It's funny how our priorities can change overnight when faced with something like this.

     I am feeling more than a little saddened by the fact that the Gulf Coast ... New Orleans in particular, was not more prepared to handle this storm. This was a disaster just waiting to happen, they've been expecting it for years ... they could have done more.

       Anyway ... thanks again for all of you kind words and concern and thanks to the many volunteers giving their time and recourses to the relief efforts.

        BTW ... my pick for J-link du jour is an entry called Footage From The Flood Zone written by Patrick from Patrick's Place and his following entry called Left Behind. Reading these entries made me feel so fortunate because but by the grace of God ... that cold have been Dad and Panda.

     Patrick reminds us about the pets that have been left behind and mentions another way to help in the disaster relief is through donations to Noah's Wish ... still praying that the relief will be greater than the need, if that's even possible.