9/13/04 - 10:00AM - Colleen waits in line for 3 hours to get plywood. Decides that Mark needs to come home ASAP.
9/14/04 - 3:00AM - Mark gets ready to leave Annapolis, MD on the first flight toward Mobile.
9/14/04 - 9:00AM - Mark lands in Mobile. Driving past Home Depot observed a line of cars 1.5 miles long awaiting plywood. Observed a truck driver selling plywood out of the back of his truck. He had a sign that said he took credit cards. Don't know what his price was, but he had a line of customers.
9/14/04 - noon - Mobile Airport control tower closed. Delta continues to fly into Mobile until 10:18PM. That plane did not stay overnight and all flights for 9/15 have been canceled. Everyone is out of ice, generators, and bread.
9/14/04 - 5:00PM -Boarding up front. Note the boat is not secure yet.
9/14/04 - 7:00PM - Boarding up and getting ready. The boat has been moved to the garage. Megan has drawn Dauphin Island on the driveway.
9/15/04 10AM - Right up Mobile Bay is the prediction.
9/15/04 - 1:00PM Got word from someone who left Gulfport, MS at 4:00 AM this morning. The traffic is so bad that they still haven't made it to Jackson, MS yet. I'm still working on getting the generator and inverters situated. We still have all utilities. No rain. Winds are still about 25 mph. Possible tornado sighted in Gulf Shores east of us. I-10 is only open in the west bound direction and I-65 is only open in the north bound direction.
9/15/04 - 5:00PM - Now predicted to come right over the house. We live on the west side of Mobile Bay. Still waiting. Minor rain and winds 26 mph. The weather bouys off shore of New Orleans are showing 45 foot waves. If you want to watch local coverage, there is streaming video at www.wmpi.com . All of the big bridges are closed. The Bankhead tunnel is closed, but the I-10 tunnel is expected to remain open. Much of Baldwin County will be under a curfew at 6:00PM. Mobile County has not said anything except that there will not be any garbage pickup tomorrow.
9/15/04 8:15PM - Went outside so that Emily could make her news report for her school news program.
Noticed a stranger across the street who was acting odd. When I talked to him he claimed he was related to the people in the house and was going to stay there for the hurricane. He then STARTED to board up the windows. We are now under a curfew. They didn't report the curfew that started at 6:00PM until just now.
Lights flickered a couple of times, but came back on. The kids are happy since the cable hasn't even flickered. Still not much rain and winds are up to 45 mph. The eye is now 80 miles due south of Dauphin Island. The prediction is to see 75 mph around 9:00 PM and the eye to make land around 1:00AM. The battery inverters are on-line now
9/15/04 10:00PM - Still have all utilities including cable. I got the video loaded. Check Emily's page for the video (20MEG). Rain has picked up some and wind is 42mph. The eye is now 60 miles south and is expected to get to us at 3:00AM. Leslie, Megan, and Kelly have gone to sleep in the family room. The rest of us will try to sleep in a little bit.
9/15/04 11:30PM - Crisis! The cable went out and we can't find an antenna for the TV. Also, we are down to dial-up internet connection. No more video uploads. Power is still on, but flickers every now and then. Rain is steady and wind is 39 mph with gusts of 61 mph.
9/16/04 1:00AM - Something woke us up. Found the power is now out. Radio is reporting 140,000 homes in Mobile are now without power. Rain is steady and wind is 60 mph. The eye is supposed to be 40 miles south of Dauphin Island. It appears to be going up the east side of Mobile Bay putting us in the northwest quadrant. The radio is saying the eye should hit land around Gulf Shores and Orange Beach about 2:00AM.
9/16/04 7:00AM - The phone rang and woke us up. Whoever called did not leave a message. It's daylight and we made it! Although it's hard to tell with most of the windows boarded up. It is still raining and there are still tropical storm winds. Our roof is intact. There are leaves everywhere, but no fallen trees noticeable from the two unboarded windows. Power is still out.
9/16/04 10:00AM - Generator is running the fridge, freezer, battery chargers, and, of course, the DVD player. It's only a 2k generator so that is about all it can handle. Took the whole family on a tour of our street and one street over. Counted three trees down, but no apparent damage to the houses. The house across the street had it's windows "boarded up". I've got a picture that I'll try to upload later. He used the shutters and planks from his wood fence to partially cover the windows. Still under a curfew order and they will supposedly arrest anyone trying to return to Mobile today. There have been a few cars drive through the neighborhood.
9/16/04 12:00PM - Lent the generator to a neighbor to run his refrigerator for a while. (Don't worry, the battery invertors will run the DVD for a while.) In order to get the generator to him, I had to move the car that I had parked against the gate to keep the gate closed. A gust of wind came and smashed open the gate. Our first damage at the house! It stopped raining and we walked around the neighborhood. A dozen trees are down in the neighborhood, but they all appear to have missed the houses. I guess the curfew is over as there are people driving around trying to sell us clean up services. The news is showing that Mobile was spared and Pensacola, FL was hit hard as Ivan veered east just before it hit land. Highway 59 is currently underwater a mile and a half from the old beach. The I-10 bridge going over Pensacola Bay is partially underwater. The Mobile Bay causeway is underwater.
9/16/04 1:00PM - Power is back on!
9/16/04 1:02PM - Power is back off!
9/16/04 1:30PM - Power and cable back on! Thank you for all of your support and prayers. Starting to clean up.
9/16/04 6:00PM - Mobile is under curfew again tonight. We didn't make a dent in cleaning up. Still have the windows boarded up. The news is showing the waterfront areas under water and severely damaged. We are one of the few neighborhoods with power. The girls went swimming in the pool even though it still had debris.
9/17/04 7:00AM - Starting to take down the boards. They are harder to take down then they were to put up. The whole family is outside cleaning up. It is very hot and we're all taking breaks to go swimming in the pool that is now debris free. Ventured out to Home Depot to get a few items. They are sold out of almost everything that we were looking for. Most of the traffic lights were out, but some of the stores were open. Only one gas station was open on the way and it had a huge line. The radio said that today folks would be let back into Mobile, but not any of the water front areas.
9/17/04 10:00PM - Mobile is under another curfew. Most of Mobile is still without power. We have a family without power spending the night with us. All of the boards are down from our windows and our yard has been cleared. Note: The bags are 60 gallon bags and the brush pile is six feet tall. There is now a problem with bees and wasps displaced by the storm. Noticed a Delta Jet this afternoon and found that the airport has reopened on generator power. News reports continue to show the devastation in the low lying areas. The I-10 bridge in Pensacola, FL is destroyed. A picture shows the back half of a tractor trailer on a section of bridge still standing. They have no located the front half or the driver.
9/18/04 8:00AM - Power still on although it drops off every so often as more neighborhoods come back up. More clean up on tap for today. Waited in line for an hour to drop of garbage. Some tempers were flaring already. One guy trying to drive around the line hit my mirror with his mirror.
9/18/04 10:00PM - Mobile is under another curfew. Lent our generator to a family that is still without power.
9/19/04 10:00PM - No curfew. The number of Alabama Power customers without power has dropped from 850,000 on Thursday to 150,000 tonight. All of our yard has been cleaned up and the boat is out of the garage.