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Hurricane Irma in St. Croix USVI

Hurricane Irma was projected to be a category 5 hurricane.  The entire island prepped for days and there was a tangible eeriness all around, but outside the window, it was picture perfect paradise as usual.  J worked tirelessly to make adjustments to our cottage, stow away valuables and batten down the hatches.  We planned to ride out Irma next door with our neighbors.  It was collectively agreed that it was the safest place.  Leading up to Wednesday {the day that Irma was to arrive}, calls and messages poured in from both our friends and family stateside and on island.  We call the latter, island family.  This is what struck me most of all.  Not the incredible potential disaster (because trust me when I say I was a wreck), but the strong fabric of community and faith that we would all be ok no matter what happened because we would persevere through it together. 

The night before was another silent, calm night.  In a daze, I fixed us supper.  A lobster feast, no less!  We softly chuckled at the lush irony but since we knew that power would be down at any moment, my was-to-be birthday lobster that my husband had caught himself had to be eaten or spoiled.  Supper was deliberately savored, probably because we knew it might be the last proper meal to be had as well as being the first real meal we’d had all day.

The fullness of the moon shone down its light, illuminating our mountain top in all her glory.  Of course it had to be a full moon that night. J, spent from the excess physical exertion of the day and my mental exhaustion of pretty much being on the verge of tears all day finally wore us down.  Around midnight, we collapsed on the couch.  Both French doors were open and we spent the next 2 hours staring at the beauty of our island, cloaked in partial darkness, listening to music.  The atmosphere was unconvincing in that in just a few hours, what they were proposing would be one of the worst hurricanes in history was about to ravage our little island.  There was something so bittersweet about that night and it won’t soon be forgotten.  Both our bodies kind of melted from fatigue and disbelief but for those few golden hours of respite, we were relieved of our anxieties and just enjoyed the moment of peace.

We lost power around 6 am on the day of the hurricane.  I woke up with a jolt and a pit in my stomach.  Already the wind was kicking up.  We nervously unfurled the better part of the morning chatting with our neighbors in the living room to occupy our minds.  By the time 2 o clock rolled around (what was told to be the climax of the hurricane) you can imagine the intense relief!  Conditions had never worsened past some strong gusts of wind and light drizzle.

 Sadly, our sister islands did not fare as well.  We were spared the worst as the eye passed just north of us but were told that St. Thomas and St. John were badly hit and that Barbuda was devastated. As of September 7, we are still without power but as soon as the curfew was lifted, the island united to send over immediate help.  Our neighbor is a nurse and she is at the airport transferring patients to the hospital as we speak and a local company has already begun to collect supplies to ferry over.  We are beyond lucky to have only absorbed a few felled trees and downed power lines but to remain intact.  However, I’m still reeling in shock and disbelief.  Someone on Facebook said, “It was suppose to be us.”  

 We spent the day collecting supplies to donate and help our neighbors where we could.  My husband was up early breaking up the fallen tree limbs to clear the road so we could go into town to assess the damage.  Last I heard, Irma was headed towards the Bahamas and Florida and my heart goes out to everyone that was and is in her path.  Jose is just behind her and only time will tell what will happen.  All the prayers, chants, meditations and good vibes I asked for worked.  Please continue pouring them in for them and if you’re willing or able, please consider donating time, money/supplies and lending energy to those in need. 

4 thoughts on “Hurricane Irma in St. Croix USVI

  • Yale says:

    Hey! Your name is Angie, right? I’ve been bed-bound and sick for a number of days now so I end up spending the majority of my hours awake browsing the internet on my baby (my new Macbook… a little obsessed!). I’m a huge foodie and I came across your blog this afternoon through a link via Google Images. Honestly, I don’t even remember what I was Googling initially anymore because I’ve been on your website for hours now! (I think I was searching for “mul naengmyeon” broth recipes and images?)

    First off, Angie, it’s such a pleasure to have come across your blog – it is really pleasant to browse and read. I think if we were to meet in person, we’d really hit it off and be good friends 🙂

    Second, I’m sending you lots of strength & hope during this awful hurricane season. I can’t believe how many of them are causing such damage this year. I’m in Baltimore, MD, so I’ve never been personally affected by hurricane damage (and I was in NYC before and never had to go through a hurricane there either), but I’m keeping on top of the news and I hope you’re safe and quickly get to go back to your normal daily routines. It sounds like the hurricanes are dying down now. Whew!

    Third (and last), I admire you. I really do! Just from the few posts I’ve read today, I can tell that you (and your husband) are a beautiful soul and it shows in your food too! I have so many questions for you because I’m going through something right now, which I won’t go into details of here, but my hope would be that I end up at the other end of the tunnel in a position that you’re currently in – relaxed, happy, healthy, and living in your very own paradise.

    I saved your blog into my Bookmarks so I hope to check your posts regularly (I wish I could get regular email reminders of when to check your blog, or some sort of email reminder of when you have new posts!). Keep blogging a lot because you’re clearly super talented at it!

    PS: If we have “recipe/food requests”, are you in a position (or even at all interested?) to tackle them and share? Thanks!

    • Hi, Yale! It’s nice to meet you. I do hope you have a speedy recovery! You’ll be in my thoughts. Sending you so many good vibes =) We are bracing ourselves for another CAT3 hurricane {maria} tomorrow so the entire island is frazzled and freaked. Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words. I don’t know how often I’ll have internet connection or phone service after the storm hits but I will try and update on social media as much as possible. I would be happy to accept requests. I have a book I log them into and work through. Thank you for being here. Sending you so much love and light, Yale!

  • Prayers for all. We lived through HUGO Keep us posted as to needs

  • James Casey says:

    I’m very glad (relieved)that you and your family are safe. Keeping you and your family, and all those affected by the hurricane, in my thoughts and prayers.

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