I spent most of Saturday in Tuscaloosa. We won 52-0, but the victory was overshadowed a little by Croyle's injury. Looks like he is gone for the season with a torn ACL. That has to be a sick feeling for him. I know it seems trivial and silly, but it was really hard for me knowing I was probably done playing softball for the season. I can only imagine how many times worse this is.
Friday, I fell asleep after work and missed plans that I had made for the second Friday night in a row. What is the deal with that? I apologize to those I left hanging.
Just wanted to post some final thoughts on Ivan. Not as bad as it could have been. That's the phrase I keep hearing. Still, the death toll was at 40+ the last I heard, with billions of dollars in damage. Hundreds of thousands still without power. I guess in my self-centered universe, it seemed bad enough here. Definitely the strongest wind gusts I can ever remember on Thursday. Even here, it was humbling to see just a bit of God's power. But we never lost electricity. I can't imagine being where the real damage was. The pictures and images I've seen have just been incredible.
Many here were back to their normal lives on Friday. But even though it seems like Ivan is over, it isn't over. It isn't over for the people who won't have power for days or weeks. It isn't over for those whose homes and businesses were damaged or completely destroyed, for those who lost most of their possessions. It isn't over for those who will be weeks nad months rebuilding and repairing. It isn't over for the thousands of cleanup crew workers, utility workers, and others who have been and will continue to work long hours until there's no more work to do, whenever that may be. Maybe it will never be over entirely. For those who suffered losses, who lived thru it and saw the devastation will surely never forget Ivan.
Maybe I've had a distant view of and turned my head to other hurricanes in the past. But Ivan hit close to home. It cut a path thru places that are dear to me, places I've visited many times. Gulf Shores, Dauphin Island, Orange Beach, Mobile, Foley... I've walked those beaches, stayed at those hotels, eaten at those restaurants. Sea-n-Suds, Pink Pony Pub, Lambert's... I wonder how they look today. All these places hold so many memories for me, and that's why it hits so close to home. I know I'll be more sensitive in the future to those in other areas affected by such events. I am sure there will be relief efforts, food and clothing drives and such, set up around here. I encourage everyone will do what they can to help. That's one of the best things about America, and maybe even a little moreso in the South, helping your neighbor.
One of the most peaceful things in the world to me is sitting at the edge of the ocean at night, listening to the waves softly roll in, and feeling the breeze in my face. It's pretty amazing that the same peaceful, serene place can be the sight of such devastation and destruction. I know the people who live near the coast realize the risks. I know they will work hard to rebuild. They'll start over and they'll be OK. They're resilient. That's the human spirit. Keep all those affected in your thoughts and prayers.
"I'm only pretty sure that I can't take anymore. Before you take a swing, I wonder, what are we fighting for? When I say out loud, I want to get out of this, I wonder, is there anything I'm going to miss?"