View Full Version : Charlie! You could not run..you could not hide.

08-15-2004, 03:44 AM
It's been a wild time but I'm checking in to let everyone know myself, my father, Miss Montana, and LadyRam are all fine. A little shaken and emotionally drained but no injuries.

In all my years going through the Florida Hurricane Season this storm was was quite unique. By Friday morning it was hard to figure out just where to go. When it took it's first turn to the East I decided to batten down Miss Montana and leave her in Polk county and head for my father's in Sebring to help him if it skirted his way. Ha! We ended up spending Friday in the rec hall shelter and got to watch a small tornado come through the RV park there while listening to the wind howl. Was very happy I did not tow here there. For a little while anyway. We were able to go back to his home. (Buttonwood Bay) before dark. A yard mess, some shingles off but no real damage. Then we got to sit there in the dark listening to radio tell us It was moving through Polk county with 90 miles an hour sustained winds. I headed out Sat morning with a sense of dread, but hopeful. The trip up 27 was just awful and heartbreaking. No town along the way was spared. No traffic lights, no one open for business. (except Home Depot) No food, no Coffee to be bought anywhere. But the destruction was awful to see. As I crawled my way up to Haines City I started feeling no way did Miss Montana make it through this.

One RV park on 27 had all the RV'ers cars out on the highway with huge trucks in the park removing huge Oak trees off their RV's. You had to see to believe it. As I approached my Park on the Oscceola Polk County line I had to park my truck a walk in because of all the trees down. I was about ready to cry, and then I saw Miss Montana just sitting there, the same way I left her, All the big oaks were still standing and no RV in the park was damaged. It was a miracle.

For a storm to come in from the SW coast and maintain it's eye and high sustained winds is very rare indeed. But it was the tornado spin off that did the most damage. Orlando is a mess. From SW FL to Daytona. No power, no phones, no water in most places. The West end of 192 and of course Disney has power, water, phones and cable. I'm typing this from one of their Motels this morning. I just had to check in yesterday afternoon, shut the door and rest. I also need to charge up my batteries on my laptop and phone.

This storm moved FAST! By the time it's direction was clear, there was no where left for the people in the central part of the state to go because of all the people who had evacuated from the Tampa Bay area to this area. It's the first time, I think, in history that a million people evacuated to where the storm hit.

I do hope utility services get restored soon because it's terrible for so many people. I'm heading back to my father's this morning to try and talk him into taking a little trip for a couple of days to somewhere where there is power so he can have water and air conditioning. Also to make sure he's not trying to still eat food from his fridge. I cannot reach him by phone. I did find a place to buy diesel on 192 but the station is out now. There are not traffic lights in most places and traffic is mess. It's going to be a long 100 miles back to my dad's. Maybe I won't have so many trees to dodge this time.

Well that's my report. Sorry if I rambled. It's a stressful time. So many people are up against some real challenges in the days to come.

08-15-2004, 04:21 AM
Fla Native

We have all been worried sick about you and are so relieved to hear from you. Your experience and remarks are something.

Take care girl!! We are so happy you and Miss Montana and Lady Ram are OK!!

God Bless


08-15-2004, 04:36 AM

Lady Montana was not hit because you had a lot of forum members praying for you. Happy you made it through it because we knew from your post you were in it.

I almost hitched up and pulled Monty to Deltona where my son lives. Deltona was on the bad side of the storm. 100mph winds. Spring Hill was in the best computer path. Glad I stayed. We didn't get anything at all.

Joyce H
08-15-2004, 04:41 AM
Oh BJ, It is so good to hear from you. I can relate to the mess as we experienced it with friends during Andrew. The most important thing is that you are ok. There must have been a guardian angel watching over Miss Montana. You certainly deserved this protection with the life experiences you have had over the past year. Thank you so much for finding a way to post to the forum and giving us your report. Stay dry and just remember..."Out of life's worst battles come God's strongest soldiers."

08-15-2004, 05:03 AM
FlaNative: We are all relieved to read your post this morning. Our prayers have been answered. Glad that you and your loved ones are okay. Take care ...

08-15-2004, 08:00 AM
So glad to hear that you and yours were blessed,our prayers are still with you. Good luck!

08-15-2004, 08:58 AM
Thank you for all your prayers and kind words. I'm am now at a picnic table next to the Holiday Inn on 192 using my bluetooth to go online. You would not believe the gas lines here at the couple of stations that are selling gas on 192. I got mine at 5 AM this morning and I'm happy I did. There won't be any gas or diesel here by the end of the day.

My dad's phone service is up and running. So we have been able to make contact. The problem is I have to drive 10 miles to use my phone due to the damage to the cell towers in the area. He wants me to let him wait it out for another day before I come and get him. He does not have enough gas to get here and there is no place to buy it. The community he lives in got together and combined the contents of the freezer's and have been grilling and cooking at the rec hall, so he is getting good food each day. I feel better since I have talked to him.

I have to say I am better off then most because I do live in Miss Montana. With a full water tank, gas fridge, and such I have been able to live a bit more comfortably than people living without those features. Of course that will be as long as my battery lasts. I have been extremely conservative with it's use. I have not turned on any lights. I use oil lamps for lights, take those military showers and since it's so hot here haven't bothered using gas heat for the hot water. Right now I'm pretty happy to be in an RV.

So now that the dust has settled and I know my dad is doing OK I'm doing pretty well all things considered. This is going to impact finding employment until Orlando and the surrounding areas become operational again. But it is what it is. . Now if Earl will just go the other way. I'm not in the mood to do this again.[8D]


From your posts it looks like you were in the dame dilemma, "Which way do I go...Which way to I go???" You made a good choice. Wasn't it something the way Charlie took off once he hit Captivia? I think the speed of the storm is what saved a lot of us. :)

08-15-2004, 04:09 PM

Your right about the speed of the storm. The last part of the storm just went through Maine.

If the storm would have reamained on the computer path I probably would have lost Lil Monty. From seeing films of the 140 mph winds Monty would have ended up in my neighbors living room. Strange how things work out.

Good luck.

08-15-2004, 04:10 PM
We are sure happy to hear that you and your family are doing well, hang in there and keep a positive attitude.

08-15-2004, 04:31 PM
Glad to hear everyone's safe. When those of you who were affected have time, read through the past couple day's posts. You'll know how much people cared, and you'll know why I'm really glad I found this group of people. We're all pulling for a quick recovery.

D and M On The Road
08-15-2004, 05:59 PM
Wow.... I am extremely glad to hear that you are okay. I watched Florida webcams until they lost power and it was certainly a scary sight.
Welcome back to the MOC..... we wondered, worried and prayed for you and all the others in the storm's path.

08-16-2004, 12:09 AM
We are so glad that you and your family are safe. Looking forward to your next posting on the forum.