House Work - 09/02/19
02 September 2019 | Jacksonville, Florida
The alarm woke us up at 6 am. We had breakfast and got ready to head out early. It was eerie driving around Jacksonville as there were hardly any cars around. Mark said that was because it was so early and this was a holiday. Two zones in Jacksonville were given mandatory evacuations and our house and Chris' condo were in those zones. Apparently, they started evacuating early. We actually had 36 hours to leave, if we chose to do so. We made a stop at our storage unit. Mark was able to find some of his tools that were packed away two years ago. Jim met us at the house and brought some more tools. I took the Jeep and headed to the store to pick up some cleaning items, despite asking for some cleaning help for the house. I was just not happy with the condition of my kitchen. Stopped to say hi, to our neighbors. I drove thru a huge downpour and as I got close to the bridge leading to our street, there was a beautiful rainbow. Jim had already left by the time I returned to the house. He helped Mark trim tree branches that were hanging over the upper balcony. They also tested the drains and sprinkler system and determine that our back yard problems included some issues with the underground water sprinklers. Thanks for your help, Jim! Mark went around the house and sprayed every room for bugs. He noticed that one of our hot water tanks was leaking. I spent time cleaning the kitchen. Then we met Jim & Deb for lunch at Ruby Tuesdays. Enjoyed our lunch and the good company. Our next stop was a visit to Home Depot to pick up a new hot water tank, plus several other pieces needed to replace it. Headed back to the house. Unloaded our purchases. Then Mark started replacing two downspouts which required digging up part of the back yard around it. I was the helper. Judd paid us a visit as he was pulling his kayak out of the water, with the hurricane threatening. Then another neighbor came to help Judd. We met our new neighbors, Mark & Amanda. The water level is very high. We got to see two manatees in our canal, which came up to the surface several times. It had rained earlier, but the sun came out and we were blessed with some blue skies. Hurricane Dorian had not moved much thru the day as it was only moving at 1 mph. At least the wind speed decreased to 130, so it was no longer a category 5 storm. Also, it shifted more to the north and now all the models are predicting that it will head offshore as it goes north of Florida. That was the best news today! It was around 5 pm before we locked up and left. We stopped at Publix and picked up a few more groceries, just in case we lose power over the next couple of days. Mark wanted to check out the beach, despite knowing that the beaches were closed. We found a parking spot on 1st street in Neptune Beach. The entrance to the beach was totally blocked with a wall of sand. We both enjoyed some ice cream custard. It was the only place open as all the restaurants were boarded up and already closed. Then we walked to the other side of the Ocean One hotel. We passed a news crew bus on the way. There were Do Not Cross bands across the entrance. Took some pictures and walked back to the car. Then drove a block over and parked just off the beach. This entrance did not have any posted signs to keep us off the beach. Took lots of pictures which I later posted on Facebook. Mark walked out on the beach. We could see lots of people on the beach. The waves were sizable but not that huge. We didn't see any surfers. The weather was very pleasant. The blue sky was etched with thin white clouds. Nothing identified the fact that there was a hurricane south and east of us. The Bahama islands are definitely taking the full brunt of Hurricane Dorian. So much destruction there. We returned to Chris' condo. Put away our groceries. Then watched some tv. Put together our dinner and then did some relaxing. Watched a few episodes of Below Deck in French Polynesia. Thanks for the emails and messages. We are keeping a close eye on Dorian and so far, we are not evacuating.