Saturday, September 20, 2008

Chasing that Bastard Ike

Okay, this weekend was supposed to be another fantastic doubleheader football weekend to rival last weekend's bay area blitzkrieg. Well that was all before Hurricane Ike flattened Galveston on it's way to Houston, inconveniencing the thousands of people caught in the storm's path of destruction through central Texas. The hurricane unfotuantely prompted the Houston Texans to move thier matchup with the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday to be postponed until Week 10 of the NFL regular Season, so unfortunately my doubleheader weekend would not materialize. At least I still had Philly at Dallas matchup in Texas Stadium on Monday Night!

Anyway, Crystal and I hopped into the Questmobile on Friday evening, heading toward what would become a national disater area by Sunday morning. The way I figured it, as long as we stayed east of the storm moving south, we could avoid Ike and its associated terrential rains. By the time we were in New Orleans, Ike would be well past Houston, allowing us to then move west toward Houston, theoretically missing Ike's wrath altogether. We planned to stay with my cousin in Houston on Saturday evening, then move north to Dallas on Sunday to be in town for Monday Night Football. In theory a fairly solid plan, however I neglected to rationalize some of the more ancillary concerns, like food, flooded exits, and the availability of gasoline once we entered the flood zone. So oblivious to these minor concerns we headed south, driving through the night to hit New Orleans for an early dinner on Saturday. After taking some pics at the Louisiana Superdome and grabbing an amazing meal at Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro on St. Charles Avenue, we hit the road bound for Houston. There were power outages all over the city, so I tried to book us a hotel room outside of Houston, which didn't work out at all. Filling up as much as possible on the way into the city, we reached my cousin's house at clsoe to 11:00pm with just over a 1/2 tank of gas. Downed power lines, tree limbs, and road signs were all over the city. Freeway exits were washed out and Walmart parking lots looked like massive lakes with stranded motor vehicles marooned at their centers. There were reports of looting and the typical natural disater surge in criminal activity, but for the most part, the citizens of Houston were just trying to beat the unbearable sweltering heat and recover from any water damage the hurricane may have caused. We were lucky to have made it and even luckier than my cousin actually had power.

The next morning I booked us a hotel in Dallas and we decided to try our luck heading north to find gas. It took a full two hours and most of our tank of gas to find a station that was open and willing to sell us gas. But once we filled up, the A/C came back on and we were well on our way to Dallas for Monday Night Football, appreciative of what we had and concerned for those that lost everything in the aftermath of the storm.

No comments: