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The post about the well made me think about things I learned from my father. He did not teach me; as in sitting down and telling me, he just made me help him.

When we left for the lake (Toledo Bend, don't go there unless you can stay or you will long to return for the rest of your life.) He had me take the big adjustable wrench, go out to the street and turn the water off to the house. He showed me where the breaker to the water heater was and made me go out and turn it off. Although it wasn't my job, I knew, because the house was either hot or cold, that the central heating and cooling had been turned off.

We did this for a weekend trip. We did the same precautions at the camp. We added a few extras. When we winterized, all electricity was shut down. All food stuffs that would remain went into the refegerator as they are pretty much rat proof. A little anti-freeze went into the toilets. As the weather is mild enough that a insulated water heater will not completely freeze, we did not bother to drain them.

It has been close to thiry years since I have been a child in my fathers house. But, his lessons served me well when hurricane Rita came.

The eye of Rita either passed over my home, or so very close to it. When we evacuated, Rita was a Cat 5 hurricane, it was predicted to land to the west of my home. If it had landed where it was predicted, my home could have been under 10 feet of water.

I told my wife to pack the thing she could not live with out, because there was a good possiblity that nothing would be here after the storm. However, I also told her that hurricanes did what ever hurricanes wanted to do an that we should leave the house prepared in case nothing happened to the house.

What we did was an outgrowth of my fathers teaching.

We packed the irreplacable stuff. We emptied the fridge, I took the small freezer with me. I shut in the well, and turned off all of the electicity to the house. We lifted things up that we didn't want to lose but could afford to, and we closed all of the doors to the rooms.

In the end, a large tree fell through on corner of the house, destroying my boy's bedroom. The way everything worked, the wind driven rain passed over the room, so that the house did not flood. The closed doors helped keep the house stiff in the wind so that we did not suffer cracked dry wall all over the house, and the closed door to the boy's room kept the moisture confined to one room.

The open breakers at the main panel kept power surges from going throughout the house, and we lost no electical or electronic equipment.

The most important thing we did, was empty the 'fridge and take the freezer with us. Some people had the unpleasant task of trying to clean the freezer and 'fridges with two week old rotting fish and shrimp in them, others just sealed them up and put them on the road. Either case was enough to make you retch.

When there was no houseing, we were able to isolate the electical from my boy's bedroom and move into our damaged house. Many others were not so fortunate. Many others, did not have my father.

Thanks Dad

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