TS Karen and Gypsy – the Airstream

danger on the horizonThere’s nothing like living on the Eastern Shore, here on the Atlantic coast, when you’re watching a weather pattern offshore turn in a tropical storm or hurricane. The storm chaser part of me looks forward to the wild ride but the reality is there’s nothing fun about it.

It’s official. Karen is now a tropical storm. She’s heading in the Gulf of Mexico, not towards our area right now, but when you’ve lived through all the damage and destruction of one, you can’t help but feel empathy for those in the line of fire. These things just pop up when conditions are right, rather in the Gulf of Mexico, just off the Atlantic coast or mainly the west coast of Africa.

Yea, we’re kind of used to this but it sure doesn’t mean we like it. Preparations are a fine art and usually not generally needed. However, then comes the times when you’re grateful to be as prepared as you are. At least your windows are not breaking, your lawn furniture isn’t flying through the air to land on someone else’s property or you’re not home to watch the swimming pool float around the yard because the flood waters have come so high. Yea, preparation is key even though it can be a real pain.

This year is going to be a different experience with preparation. I’m not in a solid, sturdy house out of the flood zone. I’m in Gypsy – The Airstream, my beloved tin can home. As much confidence as I have in her, I don’t think she’s up for the task of what’s coming towards us soon. My hope is she stands firm with those winds, learns to paddle like some of those cars in the James Bond movies and shows me what a fighter she is!

Truth is, none of that is going to happen so it’s up to me to prepare her. This is going to be not only interesting but a continuous work in progress because there are things to take care of that I haven’t thought about at all. Some I won’t think of until after it’s already happened. My bad, something to add to the learning experience.

Awnings – they have to come in. Windows – closed, locked and taped shut (or those sustained horizontal winds will be blowing in water). How do you prepare for leaks that may erupt from the ceiling? I don’t know about that one yet but I’ll figure it out. Make sure everything inside is secured and put away (just in case so there’s no flying debris if the worst should happen). Disconnect all electric and battery power (again, in case the worst should happen). All GAS off, disconnect the tanks, relocate tanks to a safe environment and stabilize so they won’t be more flying (or rolling) debris. As you can guess, flying debris is an issue. Clean out the frig and freezer (yep, hate that thought). Disconnect water and sewer (self-explanatory). Move (this one is going to be interesting).

Where? See, I live very close to the water but out of a flood zone. However, with storms like these, we have all the wicked wind that blows across the river. There’s nothing out there to slow it down so bam!, we get the full force of wind, gusts and sustained. Another thing is water spouts. They just appear over the river when the conditions are like this. Tornadoes, also. Then there’s trees. Tall trees, all around me. Move. Years and years of living through storms and experience is being relied upon to tell me where the best place it to move sweet Gypsy to keep her safe from the wind. A few of us have had this discussion in the past but this will be the first time it will be implemented. See, I’m notorious for riding out a storm but not this time. Tropical storm or hurricane, you truly don’t know what you’re working with unless you’ve had the experience. I also am not stupid. The reality is I’m not dumb enough to take a chance like this.

Which means I’ll have to stay with kiddo.

I don’t want to stay with kiddo!

More to come. 🙂

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8 thoughts on “TS Karen and Gypsy – the Airstream

  1. Good luck to you! Gypsy looks very aerodynamic so hopefully the winds will just flow around her. I July we weathered a microburst in the desert – no warning – with high wind, lightning all around us and horizontal rain and hail. Very frightening. You’ve done the right thing.

  2. I tis now the 7th of October as I read this, and being in a caracavan goodness, I hope you’re alright! I live in North Queenslnad, Australia, and we have hurricanes (which we call cyclones) I experienced Yasi, a category 5, very nasty, though where we were we got Cat 3 winds. It was enough to cause minor damage and make things interesting, but those in the centre of the storm suffered terribly . . . I remember hearing a man who called the radio station up who was hiding in his caravan in his shed form the storm. He survived so I daresay his caravan would ahve held up alright too!

    • Then you truly understood the effects of what could happen. Thank goodness Karen has been downgraded to just a rain event. I really wasn’t in the mood to do hurricane prep right now! They can be very dangerous, just like your cyclones. 🙂

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