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Sunday, September 14, 2008

A Dramatic Movie

On early Saturday morning, she arrived. Hurricane Ike came with a majestic power that left many powerless, helpless, and some without even a real life anymore. At precisely 2 am, we decided to go to bed because a friend thought "the storm was not fun" and no point staying awake for. He wanted drama. He wanted howling winds. He wanted rainfall. He wanted excitement. Nothing happened. Not until 4 am, at least.

And then he got a blockbuster hit. We lost electricity. The winds howled like I had never heard them howl before. It was like one of those horror movies that you want to watch but do so with your eyes shut through most of it, except here, there was no obvious blood or gore (unless trees swaying from one side to the other count as gore). At least when a horror movie ends, you can turn a comedy movie on and try and forget about it. This was different. I woke up to worse horror. Trees had died, blocking roads, traffic signals had either changed direction or fallen on the street, roofs and fences were shattered, and I felt that I was walking through the sets of a disaster movie. It felt like a scene from a CNN news broadcast that I am used to watching on tv. This time it was real. And the same excitement-seeking friend said, "yaar itna nuksaan nahi hua." I guess he wanted a blockbuster hit that lasts for 365 days. Little does he realize that it may very well be one for those who are homeless today thanks to Ike.

Amidst all this, I get a message from someone asking me to come online for free counseling. Yet another someone asks me why I am not publishing his comments. And then there was a someone who called me to ask me "How is Dayton?". There was a friend grumbling that he ran out of cigarettes and that the stores were closed. Another someone was worried that his taxes would go up while the government tries to restore the 4th largest city in the United States. And then someone else who thought it was funny to say "Why are you not online? Did Ike damage your internet?" Everyone was starring in their own dramatic movies assuming that it would entertain their audience.

Today as I write thist post, I am seated at a friend's place who is among the 1% of Houston's population who has power and water. I am amongst the 99% who does not have power and has no chance of having it restored for another 4 weeks at least. We are surviving on frozen foods and hoping that we don't run out of it. And yet, life has to resume on Tuesday. I don't know when this dramatic/horror movie will end for me. I move to my own apartment tomorrow night. I wonder how it will be go to work without showering and wearing unironed clothes and eating candlelight dinners by myself. But that's not all.

Someone else at this moment is probably thinking how it will be for them to live in their own home once again. They are starring in a horror movie that someone else is watching seated in their very own home theater.

112 Words of Wisdom:

Shachi said...

Hey Sneha,

I was thinking about you - not sure when you will check this comment but i hope everything is fine. i have a 1st cousin who lives in downtown houston (has a home) - please email or call me if you need any help.

love n hugs,
Shachi

Southpaw unplugged said...

Reminds me the flood in mumbai a couple of years back, ofcourse the devastation occured more due to gross negligence. Please take care.

harish said...

hey...
be safe and endure through this with hope and your sense of humor intact...wouldn't want my fav blogger to be out of the scene...

Keshi said...

very well-said!


Sadly as humans, we all think that our own life is the biggest dramatic movie ever lol! hence the 'expectation' from the other to be there for us regardless of what that other person is going thru. I know, it sucks and its a very selfish thing to do. But I've seen that happening everywhere...and I might hv done to that others too.



**Why are you not online?

omg didnt they know u were evacuating etc? cos u had a post abt it too. Some ppl r brainless!


So many ppl hv bigger issues like lost homes, valuables, even loved-ones...still some folks always think that their issue is the BIGGEST, even if it's abt rotten sandwich they just bought!



Anyways, hope all is well with ya and that u'd be able to go back into ur apartment on Tue, and start afresh safe and sound, dogless and all ;-). Good luck Sol and TC!



Keshi.

Ghost Particle said...

then probably not knowing is better then knowing. right?

Aphrodite said...

donno wht to say...no words can be consoling enough..all i wld say is...have to cope with it girl...thinking ur one of the lucky ones alive:)

lukkydivz said...

aww no worries!
take care and be back soon :)

Hiren said...

pray that such blockbusters shouldnt hit at all ... the devastation would simply be irreparable to those suffered ....

hope that there is not much loss of life this time ...

glad to know that u are okay .... do take care.

Vinz aka Vinu said...

Ike...many of my friends are affected...good for you that you are able to sit and post about the 'horror movie', somehow..!!

anyways as it says, life has to move on..!!

take care..

Enigma said...

hey good to know that ur r safe and sound....ya i heard that the disaster was trmendous..saw pictures....so many hav lost so much na....hope things will somehow work out for everyone...

Amrita said...

reminds me of a super cyclone i witnessed in my home town..
take care.....
And dont worry... hope is a very strong binder

Hemanth Potluri said...

my god ....i had this experience with tsunami my whole building shock me ...and lots of people lost life in chennai..sneh u take care yaar..dont go out we the storm is strong..

urs..hemu..

vishesh said...

we all are happy to see watch the horror stories...but then when we are hit or sit down and just imagine the thing,we know that it is scary a\

Arjun said...

Take Care Sol!
It's not easy picking up the pieces of life.. and moving on!!

We do it here. They will do it there.

Pavi!!!! said...

n once again its been proved that nature is the most powerful! man can control somethings not all..

n remember it could have been worse..u had a place to goto and friends who cracked jokes or cribbed or laughed or played or simply gave u company thru' this..and thats the greatest boon!

ceedy said...

This is memory and an experience that is going to stay with you for this lifetime....so try to come to terms with as much as you can.

I hope you, your friends and local residents have a healthy recovery.

I was following it on CNN and it was bizzare to see the plunder. Its baffling - year after year there is this big calamity and we just sit there gaping and helpless.

I hope you are doing fine and will come out of it stronger.

Take care and all I can share is a warm hug - hope it makes you feel better.

Jira said...

I am glad that at least you are well. Hope that you get power restored soon. It is going to be hard,bu thang in there.

I have been thinking about this...How people who have been evacuated lose their homes, peace...All within a matter of a few hours.
My heart really goes out to them. I wish at times that nature were a little less harsh to us.

Veens said...

I m glad u r well at least. Feeling helpless about so many things..

Felt so helpless abt the Delhi blasts and now this.

Please take care, and thats all I can say and wish.

Jack said...

Solitaire,

It is sad. Nature has a way of getting back at us to remind us who is the BOSS. And even at such times we have narrow thinking about ourselves. Wish you all the best to come out of it soon.

Take care

Still thinking said...

Hope you are doing well Sol?

Take care and hopefully things will get better soon. Hope you have some family and friends around.

AmitL said...

*She's safe,She's safe*-gives smile of relief. I'm now sure I'll never know anyone like you,Sol...such a disastrous hurricane passed you by,there's no electricity,eating frozen foods,and,you're still blogging!!!Hats off,again!Great to know you!
--
At the same time,I could sense the sadness in your mind,for people who have lost their homes/belongings in the hurricane,and may take ages to revert to normalcy.And,I also pray for their well-being.
--
It also makes me look back over the last 2-3 yrs-haven't the hurricanes/storms/floods increased dramatically in the US areas over these years?Global warming or something else?

carolinagal said...

I hope things get better for you soon. Take care sweetie.

Stupidosaur said...

Quite prophetic, your previous post.

Coming just before Ike.

Take care.

Solitaire said...

@ ghost,

What does that mean?

Solitaire said...

@ stupid,

Yeah in a way, that's true. However, I am still dreading going to work tomorrow already.

Solitaire said...

@ CG

Thanks!

Anu said...

When i read your first lines, I started praying. Im soooo glad your ok. I have a couple of friends in texas, and they are safe too. But their elderly neighbours who went to move their car, werent that lucky. I hope everything gets better quickly and hopefully the devastation is minimal.. praying for you all Sol!

(¯`•._.•[Raaji]•._.•´¯) said...

yes we heard about the horror movie but didnt go through it. I cannot feel the pain and suffering you guys must be going through but my prayers are with you. Hang in there. Bad times pass.
:-)

Ankur said...

I only hope that many people havent had to give up on their lives irrespective of all this. The economic damage can be treated but a dead man cant be brought back to life!!

Also I am happy that you are doing great, which doesnt means that my heart isnt prayin for all those who have been victimized by this!!

Sometimes, the excitement results in disaster, and i hope ur friend realizes now... (not sarcastically)!!! :)

Take good care of urself and others too if u find someone in need!!! :)

The worst is gone, and now what is left has to be assembled again... the smiles will be back i m sure!! :)
Amen!

Cheers!!!

Ash said...

Glad to hear you are safe and well.

Love your new profile pic :-)

Rakesh said...

u r on the better side..think abt. bihar floood victim...it is worse than huricane....i hope everything will fine:)..good luck

Cinderella. said...

I cant believe ppl actually said that !!

I mean ok if it was for fun sake but then tere is a time everything ! Gross !

You take care. It's gonna be fine. I mean not that you dont know that already.

Be safe.

♪♪HARINI♪♪ said...

umm i really dont know what to say....

brocasarea said...

hope ur are alright!..
read abt it in the news papers!!...
and ur clients dont leave even during holidays!!...

mohak mehta said...

have been trying to call you since i read the post since last half hour...
wats the matter ?! i hope everything is fine and u are re-settled by now :)!

Sree said...

Doesnt it take only a moment to shatter a dream,a life.Nature does it best.But now the humans are competing too.They discovered bomb.

Well..glad you are writing and living the moment.

Solitaire said...

@ Shachi,

Thanks a ton!! I am doing quite ok at this time. Thankfully have a lot of support in Houston. Will call you once things settle down.

Solitaire said...

@ southpaw,

I am not aware about those floods in Mumbai. The only difference there would be people would have someone to blame and point fingers at and here they left it to destiny after they did all that they could.

Thanks!

Solitaire said...

@ Harish,

Awww thanks!!! I won't be out of the scene. Don't worry. Just will take me a longer time to respond to people and to visit everyone's blogs.

Solitaire said...

@ Keshi,

You are right. Some people make mountains out of molehills, some pretend to be ignorant even when the information is out there available to them, while some do not care for what's happening to others unless they are affected.

Thanks. Will be back soon.

Solitaire said...

@ Aphrodite,

Yeah. I am not unhappy about myself as much as I am for the 60,000 people who have lost their homes and possibly even more...

Solitaire said...

@ Lukky,

Thanks.

Solitaire said...

@ Hiren,

So far ten are dead and more are suspected. Thanks to the government's brilliant preparations, foresight, and rescue operations, a lot many people are safe and in shelter. The losses though are irreparable for many.

Thanks!

Solitaire said...

@ Vinz,

Yes life has to move on and will definitely move on. We do not know how everyone will fare though.

Solitaire said...

@ Enigma,

Thanks! Yes..a lot has been damaged and lost. The damage is estimated to be worth 10 billion dollars. Its a sad state but knowing the United States, I am sure they will recover. I am wondering how the people will, though.

Solitaire said...

@ Amrita,

Then I am so sure you know what I am talking about this. This was massive in size. Spanning over 600 miles.

Solitaire said...

@ Hemu,

:)

The storm has passed. The city has not recovered yet but I am already at work today. We are managing. Don't worry.

Solitaire said...

@ Vishesh,

Exactly. Experience is the best teacher.

Solitaire said...

@ Arjun,

"They will do it there".

Who is they? You are talking about me in third person!

Solitaire said...

@ Pavi,

I am ever so thankful for friends who have extended their support and the community like spirit in Houston. Also a special thanks to you for all your support. :)

Solitaire said...

@ ceedy,

Thanks!! I will definitely move on as if nothing happened because I am not suffering as much as those in Galveston. Yet, it is so painful to see all this around me and I am not able to do anything about it.

Solitaire said...

@ Jira,

I wish that nature would be gentle all the time. Sadly not. There are earthquakes, forest fires, hurricanes, winter storms, and what-not!

I guess we only have to accept what nature gives us.

Solitaire said...

@ Veens,

Yeah we all feel helpless for all that is around us, especially if we are in the midst of it all. But life does move on.

Solitaire said...

@ Jack,

Thank you!

I guess people do not really understand until it happens to them.

Solitaire said...

@ Still thinking,

Thank you. Am fine. And am grateful to know people in this area.

Solitaire said...

@ AmitL,

I have no idea about the increase in hurricanes. I did not even know that there is an increase. But one should remember that this comes from the Gulf and affects many other countries before it hits the US.

You are so cute. :)

Solitaire said...

@ Anu,

Thank you so much!! Knowing people yourself, I am sure you very well understand how dangerous the situation was. I am praying for everyone's well-being too. Very sad to hear about the deaths that happened.

Solitaire said...

@ Raaji,

Thank you! The bad times will pass and make us all stronger, I hope. I hope that those affected the worst by this find the strength somehow to move on.

Solitaire said...

@ Ankur,

thank you for your smiles and prayers. A special thanks for the blurb you have on your blog.

You are right. A lot of things can be replaced with a price but not lives of people and pets. So far about 20 have died in the entire nation because of this but the numbers may rise. I hope the survivors come out strong.

About my friend, I have nothing more to say. I have realized he is very self-centered.

Solitaire said...

@ Ash,

Thanks Ash!

Solitaire said...

@ Rakesh,

A disaster is a disaster. Does not matter where it occurs..whether it is in Bihar or Texas. It even does not matter how many people died and what damage occurred. The pain is the same. There is no competition going on here for first position.

Solitaire said...

@ cinderella,

Thank you! Your words are much appreciated. I am safe now and I hope everyone else who is not, will be soon.

Solitaire said...

@ Harini,

Why?

Solitaire said...

@ Broca,

My clients don't leave even during holidays? What does that mean?

I am alright!

Solitaire said...

@ Mohak,

What do you mean by "what's the matter"? Did you read the post? Do you expect cell phone towers to be still standing after a category 3 hurricane?

No I am not re-settled by now.

Solitaire said...

@ Sree,

Well-said about the bomb! We never stop, do we? Ultimately, we will only have ourselves to blame for our own downfall, I guess.

jitendra said...

hmm.. most of my friends in houston had evacuated. how come you stayed put?
just when i was thinking of moving to houston from the west coast for good (since practically the whole oil industry is there), something like this just extends the inertia.

take care.

Lena said...

well... some people maybe just dont realize what is going on, our own issues and worries seem always to be bigger than others'.
Be safe dear and take care of yourself.

Pavi!!!! said...

Therz sumthing for Gujjuben at my blog..come over when u get the chance.

Mansi Trivedi said...

Very well written and we all need to look at the bigger picture and once in a while,against all odds, try to be less selfish and think about those without homes today.
Well written.

*~*{Sameera}*~* said...

That's terrible!Glad you are safe.

Only when we are in the shoes of the one who bears the brunt can we really feel the pinch.And people get so excited by such calamities,geez!

Take good care,hope you get back power before the said time.

Keshi said...

**while some do not care for what's happening to others unless they are affected.


thats so true! its always the case Sol. Sadly its human nature. Only very few can think outside their 4 walls.


U take care now!


Keshi.

Alok said...

:( terrible !

Hope things will be alright as soon as possible and you take care.

Southpaw unplugged said...

Yes we did, blamed the civic administration to the core.

Ghost Particle said...

sry, jst saw ths.

for the ppl who asked the wrong questions at the wrong time, for them, probably not knowing is better than knowing. that's what i meant.

Rakesh said...

i am taliking about facility and bureaucracy of particular place which not effect only at the time of disaster but for years.....

Anjuli said...

Hey Sneha, hope u are doing okay...

howz the situation now?

rantravereflect/ jane said...

hurricanes in houston and bomblasts in india are like blockbuster tragedies thses days..

i'm soooo glad ya're alive n well..
life sometimes does stop when nature decides to take the upper hand, but i guess and pray this too shall pass..

and for the thoughtless peopel n the uninitiated, yeah, every one seems to think their liev is more dramatic than the rest...

lots of love, hugsssss..
well, i think wat i need to wish ryte now is lots of lovely water and may electricity huggg ya home :)
mwuahhh :*

harish said...

http://comedyplus.blogspot.com/2008/08/flooding-survival-kit.html

something to keep ur humor sense intact at times like these...

PrAcHi said...

Ohhh god.. A gesture of nature to tell us that it is powerful. We have to accept it. Hope everthing is fine. Take care dear.

SMM said...

Sol hats off to you gurl...you face a hurricane, you have no light, no water, limited food and yet your blogging.

That's the spirit. Good to know your safe and in one piece. I guess you suffered damage in other ways (would hope not), but the main thing is that you and your spirit are doing just fine.

Take care gurl. We shall be expecting posts later on unironed clothes and candlelight dinners.

On a serious note, my heart goes out to all who have suffered - with the blasts here and the hurricane in your part of the world. May God give them the strength to deal with this

Preethi said...

first time here (from Pavi's).. and your writing is amazing.. I know this is the last thing you want to hear right now.. but still.. hang in there and I hope the power and water are back soon!

MAN IN PAINTING said...

Be safe first..
everything comes next..
be with friends and family..
everything will be fine..
take care
MIP

Karthik S said...

Lets hope everything will be ok soon.

TC

Cheers :-)

Solitaire said...

@ Karthik,

thanks! I hope so too.

Solitaire said...

@ Man in painting,

Thanks!

I am with friends who are like family so all is well.

Solitaire said...

@ Preethi,

Oh thank you so much!!!

The water and power are back..miraculously!

Solitaire said...

@ SMM,

Thank you!

I guess when one is addicted there is not much that can keep you away from what you are addicted to. Hence, all this blogging! But I am really disappointed that I am not able to visit people's blogs on a regular basis.

Anyway, thanks for your wishes!

Solitaire said...

@ Prachi,

Its as alright as we can make it be.

Thanks!!

Solitaire said...

@ Harish,

Thank you!!!

I think I am so clumsy that even in these times, I manage to do funny things.

For example, last night I fell off my bed.

Solitaire said...

@ Jane,

I have lovely water now (though not hot!) and electricity too! :)

Yayyyyyy!!!

I hope I never watch blockbuster movies again. I am content with watching flops.

Solitaire said...

@ Anjuli,

Life is coming back to normal. How are you doing?

Solitaire said...

@ Rakesh,

That's true. I am really in awe of how the US handles these disasters so efficiently.

Solitaire said...

@ ghost,

So if they don't know, they can say, "oh sorry I did not know this was happening"?

Solitaire said...

@ South,

At least here we only have mother nature to blame. Of course there are people who are complaining about power and stuff but I think that the folks here are doing the best that they can.

Solitaire said...

@ Alok,

I hope so too!

Thanks!

Solitaire said...

@ Keshi,

Thanks!!

Things are now much better (in response to your comment on S and S). It is starting to look more normal for me in many ways because I have power and water. However, other things are not yet back on track.

Solitaire said...

@ Sameera,

Thanks!

I did get power back..althought 90% people still do not have power.

Its really sad that people like to pick on other's troubles and enjoy them. I guess that takes self-centeredness to a new limit.

Solitaire said...

@ Mansi,

Thank you!

I guess it is getting harder and harder for people to look beyond their own needs and luxuries these days.

Solitaire said...

@ Pavi,

Thank you gurl. You are so kind to me. :)

Solitaire said...

@ Lena,

Thanks!


If people do not know and do not realize, I think it is maybe ok to give them the benefit of the doubt. But some people know and yet think its no big deal!

Solitaire said...

@ Jitendra,

I stayed put because I did not have a house that would blow away or a backyard that would flood. Moreover, I wanted to stay with my friends in a known area than be by myself in an unknown area and not know what happened to my apartment and not know when I would be able to return.

Anyway, I am thinking of moving to CA (earthquake land).

Keshi said...

Sol Im glad things r starting to become normal ard u. U hv power and water, and thats a good start.

I saw on TV how all the power lines were broken and damaged beyond recognition. Looks like hell. I feel so sorry for the ppl who lost their lives, homes and their belongings of a lifetime.


TC wherever u r!

Keshi.

Ghost Particle said...

hmmm that gives them a reason to bug then. wouldn't that be jst ignoring also. :D

or jst put the standard answer, everything's fine :P

Karthik said...

Hey Sneha,
I am not able to enter the Calm Frenzies blog. Could you give me the access?

karthikcet@gmail.com

Solitaire said...

@ Karthik,

That blog is closed for now. Sorry. :(

Solitaire said...

@ Ghost,

Do you think people stop at that?

Solitaire said...

@ Keshi,

thank you so much!

Ghost Particle said...

nope...they wont. i know there are millions who dont even know of Ike, Gustav. Even more dont know or understand of the impending market crash, or anything. its kinda complicated to understand...maybe theyre are genuinely ignorant, or honest or jst mis u. use ur psychic powers :| ...
bt there are who pretend to show care...u kno...jst to show ppl. in the end its still a cycle, we may never know.

Sam said...

I'm speechless and numb!! take care...

Vandita said...

I had only heard abt how bad it was...
hope the power situation is fixed soon...
take care sol, loads of love

Manisha said...

one cant really see the pictures due to the green template below ....