Gulf Revisited – 2011
Shopping at Big Box Stores to North of
May 10 – 19, 2011
- Updated June 9, 2011
Several photos of the
interior of our condo at
By LEWIS NOLAN
May 13, 2011 – Friday
– Shopping in large stores north of
Betty and I arose about 8:00 a.m. in our one-bedroom condo
Before getting in the car and driving several miles to the north up Highway 59, I cranked up my Dell mini-netbook computer to do a little writing on my account of this trip. I’ve found it’s never easy to start writing on an unfamiliar computer in an out-of-the-ordinary environment. Nonetheless, the near-miracle of small laptops makes journal writing ever so much easier than the pen-and-ink notebook varieties Mark Twain and other great writers did to ensure their immortality.
Shortly after 10 a.m., I closed down my netbook and Betty and I drove a few miles to the municipal library to check our email. Per my customary routine, I updated my daily investment “scorecard” by checking stock and bond prices listed on various websites used by brokerage houses and mutual funds I sometimes patronize. Regardless of how the market is doing – and I’m glad it’s on the upswing most days now with President Obama’s steady hand on the steering wheel and foot on the economic acceleration pedal – I always feel quite fortunate that my career work and modest spending patterns over the years have given me enough savings to invest (and sometimes worry about).
Reminded by the up-to-date Internet information that our
investments continue to perform pretty well, I was feeling good when we
departed the library and drove a few miles north so Betty could check prices at
Lowe’s Home Improvement and Home Depot stores on the southern outskirts of
We also wanted to enjoy a wonderful lunch (for me of extraordinarily fresh, fried oysters with an enjoyable trip to the salad bar) at the nearby Wolf Bay Lodge restaurant. We happened to sit at a table at the branch near the Tanger Mall served by a veteran waitress we’d gotten to know over the years of regularly dining at the home location of the restaurant on a finger of Mobile Bay 10 or more miles away. It had burned a couple of years ago and the owners were never able to get the necessary permits to rebuild on the same spot.
We got back to our condo about 2:30 p.m. – the perfect time for me to take my customary, afternoon nap. Betty somehow managed over several trips to haul the new table and four chairs up the 32 stairs to our deck and old picnic set down the stairs to the complex dumpster. We are reasonably sure that some scrounger will be glad to have the old set for free even through the original green color is badly faded by bright sun the condo deck enjoys most days.
For dinner that evening, Betty heated up some delicious, home-made vegetable beef soup she had brought with us and a fresh salad made from locally grown produce. Making the meal even more enjoyable was a glass or two of white wine purchased locally.
With the news of the day’s continued emphasis on flooding in
I had been nervously checking the daily news coverage of the flood as reported on the Internet about the flood and also picking up out-of-town newspapers from racks around town. Just today, USA Today’s lead story on the Front Page was under the headline “The great flood of 2011. Rising river speeds space of high-cost weather. Five disasters with $1B or more in damage a record.”
The news story went on to report that “storms this year have
produced significant damage, disruption to business and closures and increased
car accidents with 2011 costs that follow three record-setting years in which
thunderstorms and tornadoes alone caused an average of about
$10 billion in annual damage.”
A companion story under the
The Great Flood of 1927 was topped in the record books for
water levels a decade later. The two submergences of the heartland of
While we had been assured by the director of the boarding kennel at West Memphis for our pet greyhound that there were no doubts about the safety of the racing dogs because they had in place emergency plans to evacuate them if the nearby levee were to break, we were more than a little concerned.
The danger from rising levels of the river resulted in the
annual and famed International Barbeque Contest being moved from a riverside
It wasn’t until we safely returned home – driving mainly in sunshine while high waters stabilized and receded – and picked up Fiona from the boarding kennel that our comfort level in the levee system fully returned and we were able to enjoy looking at the immensity of the width of the Mississippi River at its crossing point bridges in Memphis.