Coping: Prepped for Heavy Weather/Hurricane Watch Set

Back in our “sailing days” when UrbanSurvival was young, and we were living on our sailboat in San Francisco (video), we would go out into “Hurricane Alley” on a regular basis and do the “Sausalito beat” to weather, up past Alcatraz, while the tour boats zigged their way around us and the big “meter” boats from the RCYC were turning up for races.  It was the life, indeed.

16-years on, getting ready for “heavy weather” is a little different proposition.  We’re now 200 miles inland and 600 vertical feet from the nearest breakers, although people in Houston are getting ready for a possible hurricane strike this weekend, hence this morning’s topic.

It’s useful to have a checklist at hand, so we jot down a few things to have handy next time you’re (or Ure) in the area of a “weather impact zone.”  Too damn hot, too damn cold, too damn wet, or too damn…whatever, the list doesn’t change much.  Time to review for our friends in Houston.

(Continues below)


Shipboard, there’s a lot to do to get the boat “ready for sea.”  That’s because things like strapping down the televisions, making sure the stove is ready to gimbal, setting the tether lines, refreshing on overboard recovery, issuing whistles…well, just a lot of stuff to do.

Shoreside it’s easier.  But the idea to write down the
“short list” for the weekend was brought to mind because on the daily jaunt to the mailbox (half a city block) it rained on me Thursday.

Here’s the thing, though:  Out of a clear blue sky.

You hear about this kind of thing now and then, but when it happens (*rarely) you will remember it.

Getting the House Set

____Secure the patio furniture.

____Cover on the BBQ grill, tied and secure.

____Cars under cover unless doing a “storm wash.”

____Chainsaw test run for fallen trees.

____Check stock of gas, oil, bar oil.

____Where’s the damn chain adjuster tool?

____Solar panels ready (*down position) in case of hail?

____Hey!  Empty the rain gauge!

Inside the House

____Worth doing a precooked meal?  (We like stews when the weather is bad – simple to fix, simple to heat, simple to eat, and saves OK.  We’d have a hard time beating a hot bowl of stew after being out in sloppy weather, ashore or inland, matters little.

____Soups, chocolate, and what after the Great Depression was called “pogey bait?”  (Pogey was a slang term for welfare or ‘the dole’ back in the day so unemployment bennies were called pogey and people on unemployment did do much but sit on the couch and eat?  What else but pogey bait!)

____Boots ready?  If you don’t use ’em most of the year, finding them can be an adventure.  I know we put them somewhere….

____Telephone numbers to report power outage?

____Telephone number for neighbors – touch base with ’em?  Good time to bond is in a mild weather emergency.

____Books laid out to read?  Might as well find them while the lights are on.

____Kindles and readers are all charged?

____Check battery supplies for the flashlights.  Wait!  Where’d we put the damn flashlights?

____Got the cat in the house?  Got pets food out where you can find it? Water? Etc…

____2-meter ham radio net fired up?  In our local Palestine Amateur Radio Club, we know who the dean of bad weather is (stormy Larry).

____Got any notes on weather spotting you need?

____Shortwave and/or good AM/FM radio with fresh batteries at the ready?  GroundZero and CoastToCoast make damn fine companions in the wee hours.

____Do you need to haul out the old-fashion (but always work) old landline phone that doesn’t use batteries?  Or should you get battery packs updated in your cordless?

____Space battery, chargers for the cell phones?

____Notepad to make notes on things that happen/go by.

____Everyone knows where the main breaker is if electrical gets whacked by trees and such?

____Non-essential electronics powered-down.

Did you ever get around to backing up all your data, or did you not pay attention when George was pimping his WD 4TB My Cloud Mirror Personal Network Attached Storage – NAS – WDBWVZ0040JWT-NESN.  They ain’t cheap at $280 a throw but we keep one each on two of our wireless networks.  Everything from family photogs to old tax returns (with huge .PDFs of backup) to thousands of MP3’s that can be ‘grab and go’ if needed.

For blizzards and such add:

____Got at least one Thermos of hot coffee?

____Back-up/off-grid heating source test-fired in case of power failure?  Frozen pipes are a beast – and a mess after.

And the Car Needs a Look

____Does the car have enough gas in it to get you 300 miles?

____Does the car have a case of water?

____A couple of MRE’s

____Some rolls of tee-pee?

____Some large trash bags?

____Cellphone chargers plugged in and tested?

____Maps or GPS updates?

____Is there a first-aid kit?


____Air in the spare tire?

After more than a decade of living on a 40-foot sailboat, sailing some of the finest cruising grounds in the word, good habits evolve and certainly excess preparedness is one of those habits.

One of my daughters called the other day to announce she and her hubby are now 100% ready – food, water, clothes, paper products, fem products, cat food – EVERYTHING for a couple of months.

I congratulated her soundly.

Not too many people are really prepared – both physically or mentally – for anything other than “tomorrow being just like the day before…”

So there you have it:  Going through the list should take more than a few minutes if you live remotely as we do and this kind of stuff is second nature.

Oh, sure, we will need to get cracking on the stew in advance, but oh, yum!

The Boy Scouts have their motto “Be Prepared” and I’ve never heard anyone who has needed their preps complain about the effort when they really needed it.

One last thing:  Make sure you have and keep a weather radio on all the time, regardless of your perceived weather risks.  Something like the Midland WR120 NOAA Weather and All Hazard Public Alert Certified Radio with SAME, Trilingual Display and Alarm Clock – Box Packaging  will set you back $29-bucks.

Amazon will do gift wrapping, though, so you can  give it to yourself.  Pretend Christmas is here early.

____On Dancer, on Prancer, on Ecstasy or weed, have you called your hook-up and fixed up your need?  LOL… Seriously, though?  Have your meds where you can find them, too.  You should never get below a two week supply of anything mission-critical.

Other than checking the “compass juice locker” for when the worst is past, let’s hope like always that we have way over-prepped again.

Let’s see if telemarketers will call into Houston during the storm, shall we?  THAT ought to be a felony.

This being Friday, if we have overthought this, the stew and the compass juice should see us to Monday when UrbanSurvival flies again!

Woo-Woo: The “Star Chamber” Dream

I awoke with a start and looked at the clock:  4:12 AM.

The dream I’d just had was one of those more real than Life things I get every so often.  It was the basis of my first novel, DreamOver: A David Shannon Adventure, too.  Which deals with the odd phenomenon of “personality jumping” in the dream-state.

The dream scene that had jolted me awake was this:

The setting was almost Gothic.  There was a machine ahead and to the left of me and the remains of a man’s body was about to be lowered into the machine.  It was evident from the design that its purpose was to not only kill a man, but also to, in effect, grind up his soul so there’s be no out for his spirit at the End of Time.

The people around we were unfamiliar.  They were…the word Masonic formed in my brain, but it wasn’t that.  More like a cross, though being judicial and religious order.

A question had been presented to the group:  “What is the fate of this man, bishop Bannon?”

At that, a voice from one of the figures in front of me – who apparently had been deeply wronged by the “bishop Bannon” let out with a kind of gleeful “Well, if it’s HIM, then let’s get on with it.”

As I awoke, the upper third of a torso was being lowered into this “soul wrecking machine” – almost like a shredder of sorts.  And there was an image of a thing like a scepter, except quite gross, as would be carved into the tops of intricate church seating, such as I once saw at the old church from the 1500’s down in Cusco, Peru.


A fine example of how the human brain and tune-in and make-up “endings” to stories started a long time ago.  But odd enough – and with enough clarity and detail – especially the judicial/star chamber aspects – that I thought it worth writing down here (as well as my dream journal).  Told Elaine about it and got up, still bothered by the imagery.  Not common for me.

There was residual it it; a sense this “bishop” had to go lest he reveal secrets that would somehow impact “the Order.”

Whatever that Order is, anymore.

You can imagine my surprise at all the death imagery in politics that has been floating around…and then to find out Stephen Bannon may be invited to speak at UC Berkeley, well too, too weird!

And no, we don’t get SNL or cable, just streaming, and not since early last night…


Write when you get rich,

11 thoughts on “Coping: Prepped for Heavy Weather/Hurricane Watch Set”

  1. As a survivor of Andrew Frances and Wilma I have a few items to add to your list. Spray paint to spray numbers on your house or what’s left of it. Take pics of all your stuff and put on thumb drive. Have insurance policies and numbers for claims. Washing machines make great ice chests. Be prepared have cash and have lots of Booz around when you discover that insurance companies are not in the business of paying claims. Evacuation is a must more people die for these events from drowning.

  2. I keep my tool chainsaw tool Duster with extra chains and extra bars and extra oil near or mounted on the wall of my dirt room which is the room that I exit my house from so it’s all right there and in the dirt room with over a dozen Garden shelves one shelf to sell three shelves four shells the same shells I use for the porch and I keep an extra chainsaw chain adjusted tool on the porch on my porch which is known as Bryce’s lazy porch Garden on the walls of my porch I keep everything mounted on the wall with nails screws fasteners shells so my establishment is more like one large to shell shed and inside my living room but when you go in the door from the porch and to the living room is shells shells and shells but those are not Garden Shoals those are wouldn’t shelves with books books and some tools and some more books and then there are or is the shelf over the fireplace that I don’t use that Scott construction books galore also there’s a desk in there that has 3 computers in there made by Bill Gates that some of bitching bastard as Rich’s he is he has the audacity to cut off all 3 of my computer because he wants more money screw him an’t get enough he’s so dadgum money greedy powerful I got to have more I got to have more I’m just not rich enough I may be the richest guy but I want more it sounds exactly like the Federal Reserve you know hey we’re trillionaires but we want more we want more it almost sounds like George sometimes I got to get more I got to get more everybody wants more don’t they set me maybe a few half a dozen other people I don’t want more I just want to be comfortable?
    So the truth is out there most people on this planet want to be comfortable but we have these few 1% maybe two or 3% that just want more? But that’s the way all forces are they want more and more control me I’m one of those forces for I don’t want more and more control I just want control of my own life or at least think I do have control over my own life you know I may say bad things about the people that are in charge of the world the universe but we’re also spirits and we’re all different but when those two forces collide that’s what makes the charts that are in Georgia’s possession change from a high to a low and from a low to a high I guess it would be call a heloa hello hi is that something like Hawaii Hawaii anyway y’all have a good day may all beings be lovingly fulfilled so be it

    • you know your right.. there is never enough more.. prepping for a storm.. phew.. that brings back memories.. seventies.. I thought I had the world by the tail.. get out of the military .. had a great job.. then the farm crises hit.. pretty soon since we made products for the farmers tractors they stopped buying..
      the company kept us going full speed then fall.. the wife got sick and the car blew up..( yup I didn’t read that book in the glove compartment that said every so many thousand miles you are to get your valve stems adjusted..) driving home from the hospital.. ( the wife had one of the dalkon shields and had lots of troubles because of it) now living twelve miles from work and winter weather an early winter weather hit.. I would have to walk to work.. I could catch a ride home but had to walk to work.. get up at one am and walk the twelve miles .. froze my feet and hands because I didn’t have gloves or snow boots.. then the hour cuts.. no food stamps to count on.. and since I was a man there wasn’t any good Samaritan laws to help..then the company laid off everyone for the winter.. no transportation, no money, heat was turned off electric was turned off we would open the door to let the heat come in from the unheated hallway of the apartment building.they were in the process of evicting us.
      Living in a rural area I would go and scrape the grain up off of the ground and use a rock and an old cast iron pan to grind it into a crude gruel.. it was one of the hardest times of my life..
      .. it was just before Christmas. For a Christmas tree I had broken off a branch of a pine tree and put it in an old can no toys for my two toddlers no food in the house…then one day a local farmer needed help catching the male chickens in his hen house he was going to pay a dollar an hour my god.. four or five bucks my mind was a whirl I was going to buy a package of macaroni and cheese and maybe a can of spam for a wonderful Christmas dinner I was ecstatic with glee.. I worked like a fiend catching those chickens.. it was just about four hours.. he got ready to drive me home and he said.. I can give you the four dollars or if you would rather .. You can have the male chickens you caught.. I took the chickens if nothing else I would put the ones in a box and since it was below zero I knew I didn’t need a freezer..When I got home I was so excited to be able to tell my wife the great news about the fact that we weren’t going to have to eat gruel again..that when I walked in the apartment.. the apartment was warm.. the heat was on.. there was a note on the counter saying that the rent was paid up to date.. the refrigerator was full of food milk for the kids the cupboards were full.. under that branch in the coffee can was an outfit for each of the kids and a toy.. I can tell you I fell to my knees and thanked god I never found out who my benefactor was.. I never forgot that incident or took it for granted either..I find someone every year in the same boat and make sure that the same thing happens to them that happened to me and I never let them know who it would be surprised at just how many there are to.. from the guy struggling at the fast food restaurant to the waitress at your favorite dive.. ( they live off of tips). I don’t wish to be drawn into their drama..just lend a hand up to a fellow member of the human race…now to be prepared for a storm.. because of that incident I make sure we have a minimum of three months of provisions on hand at all times..guaranteed if you have never been through a time like that.. you don’t have a clue at just how hard it is or how much you take for granted in life or how fast it can be taken away.
      I see the take it away part coming up fast.. it is hurtling at us at light speed. Those from the dirty thirties and the depression years the ones that really hit the pavement.. I can tell you they had at least three months of food stuck away.. money hidden in books in case the bank closed.. now they have all pretty much left us.. those that built our country strong gave us integrity and honor.. leaving a group that hasn’t a clue what they are doing..
      that is why I like our present president.. sure he got a huge inheritance to start out.. he lost it.. he struggled he built it back up a few times and lost it.. but he survived and became one of the wealthiest.. successful.. famous.. a celebrity.. he doesn’t need anything at all he has it already.. he took the job on because he seen what so many of us to coming at us at light speed and thought.. heck.. maybe I can give our country a hand up.. get them back on the right path again.. instead what is he facing.. opposition at every corner.. the media the congress both sides.. all are concentrating on what they think is important and are missing the real things important.. the soup lines of the thirties are already here.. one in three have food stamps or are needing some sort of federal service.. we need to prepare have that go bag the food..
      Oh.. an yes in my house the standing rule is.. if your hungry for something on the shelf you eat it.. doesn’t matter who it is either..

      • a really good friend of mine worked as scientist in research.. he use to razz me about my push for solar power.. then the hurricane hit on the east coast.. he lost power.. lived in a gated community.. he had backup power.. then the power was off long enough that he ran out of juice to run it.. he called and said.. I have to apologize to you.. I have been razzing you about spending so much on your system.. and now.. I am out of fuel.. no way to get it and it is 127 degrees in our home.. our food is all spoiled and we are cooking in here..
        He has since retired and moved to the country in the southwest he put up a solar power system on his home now he calls me and tells me how thankful he is for putting the system up how it paid for itself in just a few months.

      • Thank you for sharing this incredible time in you and your family’s life. This goodness, in mankind, which renews our spirit makes life worth living. You touched my heart deeply.

  3. I admire the brains of people who have such a mentality that they can remember or even remember to find the list to all those things but when you get to a certain point in your life the most important thing isn’t what’s on the list it’s what’s on your mind are you ready to go some say are you ready to go where you mean down the road or down in the basement or in the cellar no I mean ready to go are you ready to leave this body okay are you ready

  4. Good list, but I really want to know where I can get those “Space batteries” for my cell phone!


  5. Hope your drainage in your yard is good. I measured ~40″ of rain in my back yard from H Danny, but with the sand it soaked in quickly. You will be on the heavy rain side of the storm, and expect lots of little (hopefully little) tornadoes/bursts in the area.

  6. Dear Mr. Ure,

    Listen, I heard from the Beeb that some Americans in Havana have allegedly been subjected to sound attacks with resulting ill effects. This prompts a search for more reading material on directed energy such as “Sonic Warfare: Sound, Affect, and the Ecology of Fear” by Steve Goodman. Let’s keep an ear to the ground?

    Now one can return to the multi billion dollar funded Chinese state-owned China Xinhua News and its continued coverage of “the 7 sins”:

Comments are closed.