Monday, September 6, 2010

Good bye Earl

All day yesterday my radio was tuned to the CBC Maritime Weekend.  They'd foregone their usual programming for all-day coverage of Earl. Folk would call in from all over the Maritimes with updates on what was happening in their area.  One of my favourite calls was from someone in Yarmouth at the southern tip of Nova Scotia.  He

I was a bit baffled by the constant storm timing descriptors:  "Earl's eye will hit mainland at ....".   But the eye is the middle.  Why are you telling me when the eye will hit ?  Why not tell me when the edge will hit ?  And how long it will take for the damn thing to pass over ?  They kept talking about it being very wide.  Does that mean it's going to take all day for it to pass ? 

The original predictors had it passing slightly to the west of Nova Scotia, basically chugging up the Bay of Fundy.  At the last minute Earl decided to head east with the eye passing just west of Halifax. 

It was still a Category 1 Hurricane when it hit.  The winds built slowly.  It rained heavily in spurts but nothing like the sustained downpour I was expecting.

I took this video from our back deck.  In it you see the winds whipping the tree in our yard.

At 8 am things were pretty calm.  By 9 the winds where picking up.  At 1 pm when Kait called me to pick her up from work as the power was out -- the storm was at its height.  "You want me to pick you up in a hurricane ??!!!"  I squealed.   Then I got in my car and did.  Hey, I'm a mom.  It's what we do. 

Signs on the Macdonald Bridge indicated that no pedestrians or bikes were allowed.  That meant there were sustained gusts over 80 km per hour.  Not surprisingly, there was little traffic.  Driving over the bridge there was the oddest sensation occassionally that a giant hand was gentle lifting the back of the car just a teeny bit off the road.  Winds were whipping, leaves flying in fresh salty air.  And lights were out all over the place. The intersection of Quinpool and Robie involves the meeting of 6 roads where traffic is choreographed by a dazzling display of different traffic lights -- all of which were out.  So it wasn't a four-way stop.  It was a six-way stop.  Very entertaining. 

After dropping Kait at home I went for a drive to see how everyone was faring ... oh heck ... I was going to see if there was any damage ... it's that awful fascination we have with disasters, car crashes and other tragedies.

I took this video while parked at the side of Shore Road.

The Weather Channel reporting  from Shore Road in Eastern Passage.

 Sadly, the last picture was taken in my backyard !  My lovely tree, which had given us shade and privacy and green leafy beauty was uprooted and leaning toward the neighbour's deck.  Luckily its roots were still holding most of the weight of the tree and so it caused no real damage. Long story, short -- neighour has chainsaw.

While the storm was still roaring, I went for a walk with my good friends, Amy and Mickie at Hartlen Point.  It wasn't raining.  It was mild with a fabulous wind.  We leaned forward and giggled and laughed as we struggled to walk during the gusts. 

The waves were huge and noisey.  They would roar in and then would come the sound of rocks rolling down the beach.  ROAR ... plinka, plinka, plinka.  ROAR ... plinka, plinka, plinka.

I love that sound.

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