Hurricane Sandy — One Week Later


Are you ready for a Margarita Moment? I am. One hundred percent. Today we’ll browse one of Key West’s beautiful Mallory Square buildings, the Casa Cayo Hueso Bar & Restaurant. But first, I apologize for being offline last week. Hurricane Sandy preparations took precedence, and I’m thankful we heeded the warnings.

As you may remember, my family lost the fight with Tropical Storm Irene last summer, and this time we braced for Sandy’s powerful punch. We were among the fortunate. Despite having no power in our neighborhood for six days, our property sustained very minor damage, we had a neighbor with a generator in the evenings, and we had relatives only ten minutes away with power (including intermittent internet and phone service).

Some neighbors and friends lost vehicles, homes, were flooded out, or had to evacuate. People on the south shore of Long Island, Staten Island, and parts of the Jersey Shore suffered tremendously. Any life lost is great, and there were dozens of fatalities in the region.

We are doing what we can from here to help those without power–donating blankets and clothes. Local schools are housing people left homeless by the storm. Other schools are serving as warming and recharging centers. We are hopeful the situation will improve soon, with most schools reopening this week.

No Big Deal

The morning after the storm, I trekked outside to assess the damage. We had lost a few roof shingles. Then, I walked to the end of my driveway. I looked to the left, and this is what I saw:

One end of my street

Then I looked to the right. I began to get nervous.

The other end of my street

If I had two trees down on my little street, how hard was the rest of my area hit? Without access to media, there was only one way to find out. I packed up my child and our go-bags and set out in the car. For my son’s sake, I made it an adventure. We were trying to find our way through the maze of downed trees and wires. There turned out to be only one way out, unlike the usual ten options.

Today, I sit in my warm, whole house while others continue to endure hardships–without heat, without light, and maybe without a loved one. I’m very blessed, very thankful, and send positive thoughts to everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy.

Do you have any hurricane experiences or messages of hope to share?

As promised, here’s your Moment:

Casa Cayo Hueso Souvenir Shop

Casa Cayo Hueso, Mallory Square Entrance

This souvenir shop is located just south of the Ocean Key Resort on Mallory Square in Key West, Florida. The painted, wooden animals and decorative signs are plentiful and worth a look. If you’re in the mood for an impromptu history lesson, take a stroll through the wide hallway between the shop and Casa Cayo Hueso’s Bar and Restaurant.

You can easily spend a quarter hour gazing at its murals depicting life in early Key West.

One of my favorite murals at Casa Cayo Hueso

We walked through the spacious Casa Cayo Hueso Bar & Restaurant, and the spicy aromas made out mouths water. We had reservations at another place, however, so we couldn’t sample the fare that particular day. But we will return, and when we do, I’ll be sure to share the details.

What restaurant do you enjoy visiting as much for the ambiance and decor as for the great food?

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sandylrowland
    Nov 06, 2012 @ 09:17:10

    Beautiful post and fun moment. I’m glad that this time, you didn’t get hit hard.
    I live in the west and no hurricane threat here, but I have lived through some destructive earthquakes. Devastation is tough no matter how we come by it.
    It does turn our attention to what matters. Life, love, and a warm place to sleep are things I’m grateful for.

    Best to you and all those who continue to suffer.

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Nov 06, 2012 @ 17:11:27

      Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment, Sandy. You’re right. Experiences like hurricanes and earthquakes grow compassion. I also learned that a large part of a storm is its aftermath. Lack of heat, electricity, food, water, and gas cause a sense of insecurity. I cannot imagine living like that for the long-term as too many in this world do. It’s a new perspective.

      Take care, and have a wonderful rest of your week. 🙂

  2. Marcia Richards
    Nov 06, 2012 @ 12:53:38

    SO glad you weren’t hurt and your area wasn’t hit too hard! We only got a little wind and rain and are grateful for that, too. Can’t blame you for reminiscing about Key West! Cayo Hueso looks like a fun place to see as well as to sample yummy foods.
    Wishing for things to improve soon for your friends and neighbors who were devastated. 🙂

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Nov 06, 2012 @ 17:17:10

      Hi Marcia! So happy to see you here and to learn your area was spared by Sandy. We will rebuild here, and I wanted to still give my readers a little taste of what they visit my blog for. 🙂

      Because I was among the fortunate, only suffering loss of power for six days, I can look at some of the positives in my life as a result of this experience. I was forced to slow down and look at the basic needs vs. my wants. I also had an incredibly productive week of writing. I wrote more in a week than I generally do in three! My current story is set partly in KW, so I think that helped. I really escaped in my mind. Can’t wait to share the finished product with you all one day. I’m working as hard and as fast I can to make it to the Land of Successful, Published Author.

      Enjoy your week, and thanks so much for taking the time to comment. Truly appreciated. Mwah!!

  3. Julie Glover
    Nov 07, 2012 @ 14:20:24

    Nice shop!

    We survived Hurricane Ike here on the Texas Gulf Coast, and I have vivid memories of what our area looked like post-hurricane. Downed limbs, trees, and power lines everywhere. My thoughts and prayers are with those affected. I’m glad you’re all okay in your family.

    • Jolyse Barnett
      Nov 07, 2012 @ 21:00:23

      Hi Julie. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂 I wish I had more photos to show you; the wall signs were really nice. I look forward to returning for a drink at their bar. It had a nice ambiance.

      I remember hearing about Hurricane Ike, but at the time was ignorant to the immense aftermath left by the storm–things that cannot be measured by mere dollars or days without power.

  4. Donna Coe-Velleman
    Nov 07, 2012 @ 21:51:24

    Thank goodness you and your family are safe. Hopefully you have power by now.

    Love the artwork it’s so colorful and festive..

  5. Jill Weatherholt
    Nov 10, 2012 @ 19:15:12

    I’m happy you and your family are safe, Jolyse. Thank you for sharing your pictures. Super Storm Sandy was certainly a powerful storm. It’s hard to believe that people are still without power, two weeks after.

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