There are so many things that need to be done well before a hurricane or tropical storm threatens. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best is all anyone can do when a hurricane threatens your home.
I've been through Frederick, Elena, and others. Nothing prepared me for the devastation Hurricane Katrina caused. It wiped out sights I've seen most of my life. Being prepared for the nine days without electricity, the month of boiling water, and the problems with phone lines was the easy part.
I and so many others along the Mississippi Gulf Coast were not prepared for the emotional devastation. Even through our tears, we vowed to rebuild better and stronger. In many ways our community is so much stronger. Our communities are adopting SmartCodes so that homes can withstand hurricane force winds. Many are having to elevate their homes 20 feet above ground to meet the new flood elevation requirements.
I made the following video almost a year after Hurricane Katrina hit:
The port containers are long gone from my brother's neighborhood. The place I work has rebuilt with the exception of new offices(I'm sorta of tired of these trailers we've been renting!). The miles upon miles of debris are long gone. There are still many empty spaces. It's take awhile to rebuild 65,000 homes but we're getting the job done.
Thursday, Congregation Beth Israel moved into our new home in Gulfport. For 3 1/2 years, we've been using the meeting hall at Beauvior Methodist Church for our services. Hurricane Katrina heavily damaged our shul in Biloxi.
We danced our Torahs in on Thursday. All of us, were home at last!
Our new shul is capable of withstanding 155 mph winds. It is 12 miles inland. Our plans called for being prepared for the worst. Our hope is for the best.