On The Island...Where Nobody Goes....

More Wind, More Rain (Less Mail), Now is the winter of epic redundancy...

By: jitterymoose, 6:59 AM GMT on January 26, 2013

Oh, it's raining and the wind is blowing. I wish I could say "again," but that would mean that it had stopped for more than three hours. I guess I'll have to say "still." It did stop for several hours here today, and yesterday there was blue sky for a little bit, but, mostly, it's been a rainy, chilly, dreary winter with not much snow, but plenty of RAIN. But then, I hate complaining because there's some ice/snow/bone-chilling monster named "KHAN!" hammering the east coast where friends and family live. At least, that's what I think is happening. It's pretty surreal to be in sorta-kinda Alaska (not nearly as brutal temperature-extreme and snow-wise as the Interior) and hear all your friends down South tell you how much colder it is where they are....

Which also brings me to this:
A Friend Who'd Read My Book: "Do they call it 'Breakup' here?"
Me: "What?"
A Friend: "Spring -- do they call it 'Breakup' in Southeast?"
Me: "Wow -- you know what? I can't remember hearing them call it that..."
But that's my Interior slip-up and bias. I called March "Breakup" in my story set in Southeast.
I also said Brett was from "Outside."
That's not a term used in Southeast either. If you're not from here, you're not from "Outside," you're from down South, as in "I'm going Down South [Seattle] to go shopping [or for medical or for a break to get off The Rock that doesn't involve getting on ANOTHER rock--that being Ketchikan]."
You can take the girl out of the Interior, but you can't take the Interior out of the girl --
eBooks are easily edited....
So, wind and rain and that oozing, seeping cold that threads through the viscera and folds in among the blood vessels in your fingers (but isn't enough to make your eyeballs sticky -- I miss THAT kind of cold!) has kept us mostly inside with only the odd walks to keep from going insane. I wish I could say 2013 has calmed down, but I can't....

I released a book. You know, that one I'd been threatening to release for three years now? Yeah, I think it's finally done. I think. I hope. Well, done or not (15 edits, 80 beta readers in 14 countries giving me feedback, and on and on), it's up on Amazon. *cough* The Fishing Widow *cough* so I just thought I'd share that. A Paranormal Sea Story. Right now, it's only an ebook, but plans are to have it in physical form by March -- in time for Sitka Herring. And I'm planning on being there this year (she said with fingers crossed).

The flurry of emails, both good and bad, after the article in the Lawrence World-Journal (which I WILL share here and which hit the wires and not necessarily in a GOOD way (as in: "she forgives her mother." What?? What kind of crap (sorry) was THAT?!?! You know, to "forgive" someone implies that that someone willfully wronged you. What the woman did for me was the best she could think of under the circumstances. There was nothing to forgive! But I digress) ... had died down. I got a funny one today. It was meant to be a slap, but it made me chuckle and look all O_o at it. I've been getting mean emails from people I don't know. Can you imagine? Most are along the lines of "Better timing of Roe v. Wade could have fixed your mother's problem sooner." Seriously? You're going to say that to an adopted person? Whoa. But, they had died down ...until I got one today that I didn't open, but the subject line was "Happy 40th Birthday Roe v. Wade." Um ... if you don't get the irony of that statement, I can't help you. [DELETE]

Wind and rain, while it affects the mail (as in, where's that Amazon order??), it also affects the way we think ... I think. After days and weeks of it, and after all that's happened so far this year, it's kind of made me a little TOO reflective. I mean, the earthquake, the book, the whole story of the abandonment ... then meeting the kids of the people who found me ... it's been a lot. I should share this story -- about meeting the kids, though, because you never know what life's going to hand you. The Houses had a son (13) and a daughter (11) at the time they found me in 1964. I talked to the daughter who lives in NC.

After about 20 minutes, she said, "There's something I have to SAY to you. I didn't want you to read it anywhere, I had to SAY it. Are you sitting down?"
"Yes" (and I was)
"You were born on the floor of the bathroom at the Grover Bungalo Laundramat in the early morning hours of November 16, 1964, right?"
"That's what they tell me," I replied.
"What you need to know is this. My mom's father, Wallace E. Grover owned the laundramat. In the early morning hours of November 16, 1963, he went in to work, walked into the back, hung up his coat, and died instantly of a massive heart attack about two feet from where you were found."

O___O (and I couldn't speak)


I've been staring at the sea a lot these days.


Earthshaker in Craig, Alaska

By: jitterymoose, 5:05 PM GMT on January 08, 2013

I apologize for being remiss and missing the comment in a previous (waaay long ago, and I've been away too long) post about the earthquake just outside Craig. Yes. It MOVED. It ROCKED and ROLLED and shook both me and my husband completely out of bed. Now, granted, we're still in that Forest Service housing trailer just up from the beach, but trust me. The ground ROLLED. And here's how it went down ...

Me: Patrick ... off the xBox ... now.
Patrick: Aw ... mom ....
Me: Now ...

Well, that's how it started at our house about 15 minutes before the quake. The 15 year old was playing a game (I just have to get to a save point!! ... save me from save points, okay?) and I'd given up waiting for Barnes & Noble to upload my book (hey! I've got a book out! But, that's later). I crawled into bed, was JUST about a sleep (which is a trick in the trailer when it's blowing 40mph and pounding down rain) when there was this roar. It didn't sound like wind, although it could have been. The wall beside me started flexing, then EVERYTHING moved. It shook like crazy. I thought it was Tim having a nightmare so I grabbed him -- "Honey! It's okay! Wake up!" and he spluttered, "It's not ME!" ^__^ EARTHQUAKE! Got up and got into the living room where the boy's eyes were wide as saucers. Apparently, it nearly knocked over the refrigerator.
We live at sea level.
We weren't really awake.
Dang the Nyqil I took before bed.
Of course, the first reports came in over ... FACEBOOK.
EARTHQUAKE! Oh my gosh! Did you guys FEEL THAT?
Tim snapped awake.
Get out.
There was a beating at our door (the Law Enforcement Officer for the Forest Service) and then a phone call (Tim's boss).
Get out.
Got Moira out of bed, couldn't find the cat, tossed Katie (the dog) in the back of the truck, and ran for it.
The first announcement on the radio (Ketchikan) didn't come until AFTER Garrison Keillor finished his show. O__O
And they said Craig was under an evacuation order.
We drove out toward the high school.
EVERYONE was leaving town.
We only needed high ground, so we turned around and headed to the library (which is HIGHER than the City Gym, which is also an evacuation point).
On the way, I texted a friend -- Tsunami warning. GET OUT NOW.
Craig doesn't have sirens, but we do have firefighters and EMS who went door to door on Beach Road and other low-lying places to let people know. When we got to the library, got inside, turned on every computer and streamed ... EVERYTHING from AEIC to NOAA to Coast Guard to Facebook to Twitter.
Now, luckily, no shelves at the library collapsed, but books had been thrown EVERYWHERE and it took a bit to clean up. I was really happy there wasn't a lot of damage, though. But, when I got on Facebook, there was a note from a friend up in Whale Pass: What about the boys on the boats in the harbor? Steve and Dave and the OTHER Steve and Dale and --
I then remembered that you can't feel an earthquake like that on a sailboat.... But, Daniel and Frank (the Harbormaster and his assistant) were down there letting the live-aboards know what was going on.
Interestingly enough, the first Google Search of the incident that Tim did brought back a fascinating first hit: Al Jazeera. Which explained the NEXT message to pop up on Facebook--from a friend in Morocco. "You okay?" O__O
We were.
A 6" wave hit Port Alexander. It was originally reported as a 4 foot wave, but there was some confusion and the reports were downgraded.
Outside, the wind howled and the rain pounded down and the dog wondered why the ride in the truck had been so short ...
When we finally got home (about 230 in the morning), it was an uneasy night. Aftershocks between 3.8 and 5.2 were rumbling. Tim and I looked at each other. It's more placement for us. We have the barrier islands that will (if placed correctly) break up a potentially devastating wave, but there's a fault through Craig and we all eye San Juan Bautista Island a little warily now. A tsunami expert had come to the island and mentioned something about the potential for half that island to give way into Bucareli Bay. She didn't need to finish the sentence. There'd be no time. We'd all be done for.
If you get on NOAA or The Alaska Earthquake Information Center, you'll see the slip northward. A patron whose family is four of the five people who live on Marble Island came into the library yesterday. Their house barely moved (and it looked to everyone that they were the closest to the epicenter). They headed for high ground. The Coast Guard was on the radio, and he said, fisherman that he is, the guy sounded like he was going to burst into tears. I bet. I can imagine some 19 year old kid on graveyard shift manning the radio when that call comes in -- and the original call was that there WAS a wave, not the POTENTIAL for a wave, and being terrified that you were telling people they might die. Then, the Coast Guard brought in someone else -- I'm guessing the actual PAO -- who was calmer and corrected the initial reports to potential. My heart goes out to that first guy, though.
Oh, and phones rang. Because of Craig's notoriety about the tsunami basketball from Japan, lots of people in town got phone calls from the Japanese Media. Apologies from the town. We were all kinda busy that night....
Looking back, though ... it's like we all knew. I was in the coffee shop talking to Bobbie and mentioned that just Friday afternoon, I'd been writing back and forth to the friend in Morocco who is thinking of moving to the coast (Tangiers) about tsunamis. She had posted a picture on Friday (first time in years) of a dog that had a sixth sense about tsunamis. Someone else mentioned talking about them. When I went through the library returns yesterday, there were no fewer than 4 DVDs and 3 books that had been taken out last week and dropped off either Sunday or yesterday ... about tsunamis ... including all the kids' books. O__O I found that fascinating.
So, Saturday was all the talk about the earthquake (and being jumpy because the aftershocks were continuing and being ready to GET OUT in case we needed to). Sunday, I had a book launch! Hey -- it's still free on Smashwords (please allow me to shamelessly plug it because it took 3 years to write). You can get it here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/271565 and use the code FV39V in the coupon box before you check out and it's all perfectly free for your Kindle or ereader. I'd love to know what you all think of it.
I'll save the finding out the story of my adoption for another time. You know ... 2013 is only a week old. I posted to Facebook that, if EVERY week is similar to the FIRST week of 2013, I'm going to be coloring my hair DAILY.
(missed you all. I need to be here more often) ^__^

Updated: 5:20 AM GMT on January 10, 2013


The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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