By Sassy Cabot from the Read ’Em and Eat Mysteries by TerrieFarley Moran
Okay so before Bridgy and I made our big move to Florida, everyone said, “but what about the hurricanes?” And we said, “how bad can they possibly be?”
We certainly learned that lesson—hurricanes can be deadly and the aftermath goes on and on. On orders from the Governor, we evacuated from Fort Myers Beach, and joined our author in her daughter’s house in Cape Coral, just outside the evacuation zone.
After the storm, we waited on pins and needles to get back to Fort Myers Beach. When Fort Myers Emergency Services finally opened the bridge, we joined the long line of neighbors whose cars snaked across the bridge, every occupant anxious about what they would find.
Our beloved Read ’Em and Eat Café and Bookstore suffered minor outside damage. A few pieces of fascia board hung from the roof and the leaders and gutters were long gone. Three palm trees in the parking lot were twisted to the ground, unlikely to ever stand again. When Bridgy unlocked the door, we were happy to see the interior was dry as a bone but, of course, the power was still down. And without air conditioning the indoor temperature was ten or fifteen degrees higher than the 93 degrees reported as the day’s outdoor temperature. We were grateful that Miguel made us empty the refrigerators and the big freezer. Imagine the smell if we hadn't. As it is, if we don’t get power back soon, we’ll have to hire someone to do extensive mold mitigation.
Then we headed for the Turret, our beloved apartment.This debris disposal chart was stuck in our door frame. We hoped it wasn't an omen.
Of course the patio screens were a total loss and the railings bent inward, one actually detached from the building, but everything else was untouched. We gave sighs of relief. We still had a home and a business. So many folks had fared way worse.
Bridgy got busy on the phone and found that Miguel and Cynthia Mays, our local veterinarian, were distributing pet food and water in the parking lot of Cynthia’s office, which had, unfortunately, lost its roof. So we are going to run over and give them a hand, but before we leave, let me ask you, what is the one thing everyone must have when they evacuate? That’s right, a bag. So in the hopes that you will never need it for evacuation purposes, our author is giving away this sturdy tote named for our latest adventure, Read to Death.
To enter for a chance to win please comment below and tell us any of the wonderful things you use totes for—we sincerely hope that hurricane evacuation will never be one of them—but we want to know. Please include your email in this format: yourname (at) your server(dot) com—so the spambots can’t pick it up.
Comments close at midnight on Thursday, September 21st.