Tarnation, but Trooper was exhausted last night. We were both drooping by 10p.
It had been a hectic if mostly steady day. I prep'd a few provisions, entertained the dog, and finished the laundry (clean underwear being a priority in my book of survival). That morning the sunrise was red as blood - sailor take warning, as the rhyme goes. Ranger was, as always, on duty and watching sunrise.
They helped the local firearms shop in the afternoon by exhibiting a strong "presence" as items were removed from the shop in case of dire straits later. But then at 4 or 5p the traffic started to back up...
Trooper saw it and started calling on the locals to manually turn the lights to green to get the flow moving again. Debates slowed the traffic to a 6 mile crawl. Frustrated, he called up the chain. Men showed up and just as things were starting to move a pissing match and war of wills developed - those men called off. There was a storm on Trooper's brow as he reached out to friends at DOT - barricades that these people cannot knock over with their vehicles, please. Four truckloads were on the scene in a hurry, blocking the Smallville's entry points to the highway.
Calls made and the pissing match was called off, men returning to their posts and getting traffic moving again. Within an hour it was flowing as it should have been if people had just done their jobs instead of playing political games with personnel. The Smallville Fire Dept. called him over to their station and they were lined up outside, applauding.
Yes, if you call up the old Army Sergeant in him, Trooper will take command and get shit done. Period. Because he just doesn't care what you have going on in your little empire - the people need you to do your job so that they can live their lives - lives that are under rather a lot of pressure just now. Plenty of time next week to move your pieces on the chessboard, after all.
DOT left the barricades nearby, knowing that they'll get use tonight and tomorrow. My brother in Houston notes that his whole house generator ensured they were the only ones with lights last night. He loaned his portable to the neighbors which I know is helping their own travails. We have nothing more than gusting winds and clouds - we could have used some rain, actually...but we're glad to know they are doing well.
A lot of people are going to regret hanging back. This is not like some other weather event - you cannot win against a wall of water. And there really is nothing you own worth trying to swim to safety amidst the detritus. Let's hope things aren't as bad as they could have been if Ike hadn't spun itself out before landfall. It was such a little difference between it kicking up to a Cat3 or 4 and the disorganized, messy storm that landed.
Now, time for some breakfast, I think. And a moment of thanks that I can.