From near the Lake Charles airport.
The power went off here at 12:35 a.m. Saturday, not long before Hurricane Ike made landfall in Galveston.
My wife and I were ready with the candles, bottled water and canned food. It would be a long night.
The next was even worse, and there were the usual snafus, of course.
When I called to report the power outage, Entergy didn’t recognize my account number.
Thank God I won’t have to deal with FEMA, a red-tape nightmare that would make the devil himself wince.
In many ways, Ike WAS the devil, and Southeast Texas got it worse than I did. Many are left with nothing.
I had to throw away some food, but got two bags to a friend’s refrigerator.
I filled up buckets of rainwater so we could flush, or have what in the Middle Ages was considered a very good shower.
I’m not a young man anymore, and my body is sore as hell. I crouched, I climbed and reached. I did things I don’t normally do.
Not one to love long check-out lines, I actually enjoyed a moment’s rest as I waited at Albertson’s today.
The old New Orleans song should now sound, “Iko-Iko Away.” Recovery begins, and healing wherever possible.
This will seem corny and cliche, but please give what you can. There’s no such thing as a well-off reporter. A quick glance at my credit card debt proves that.
But if you can, give to the Red Cross, Orange Christian Services or similar organizations. It won’t be a match of the Stark or Malloy foundations, but it will be something.
When I was 11 or 12, I viewed the Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Telethon one day, and Jerry had cards in his hand reading off the names of donors.
After going through several names with contributions of $500 or more, he came to this kid named William from Arizona who gave $1.
Some folks in the audience chuckled.
Jerry said, “I want to thank you William. You’re not McDonald’s, you’re not Hertz and you’re not Boeing, but this is $1 we didn’t have before. And every little bit counts. Thank you so much.”
In 1968, my parents thought it would be nice to have a family outing.
We went to Galveston and stayed in some hotel there.
I don’t remember a lot about it; just I was in some beach robe and have a pic in the family scrapbook.
It was windy, and I knew it. But that’s Southeast Texas, right?
Glen Campbell’s song “Galveston” was a big hit at the time.
He still saw their sea waves crashing. She was 21.
He cleaned his gun, and dreamed of Galveston.
Many people still do.
[Readers may e-mail Robert Hankins at]