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Hurricane Handbook

August 29, 2011

Since we last talked, Chef got Saturday off, so he was there to weather Hurricane Irene with me. But, I’m proud to say, I did all the prep work myself! Here’s my hurricane handbook detailing how I survived Irene – and had fun doing it.

1.) Make a list and go to the grocery store. Because you are the last person in the Greater Richmond area to make it to said grocery store, your options will be flavored water and cinnamon swirl bread. Oh well, at least you can make French toast. Don’t forget the chips, candy, beer and wine. These are all staples of a proper hurricane diet, and calories don’t count during natural disasters.

2.) Shower, pluck your eyebrows and straighten your hair right before the storm hits. This will be important for pictures later. Half the city being without power and the roads being impassable aren’t excuses for looking less than your best.

3.) Fight off the urge to eat your hurricane snacks. Hurricane snacks may only be eaten once the hurricane actually starts. If there is no rain falling, you cannot open the Cheetos. No exceptions.

4.) Fill the bathtub with water, convinced your water is going to go out and you can use the bathtub water to flush your toilet. Be slightly concerned when you notice the water in the bathtub has an oddly green hue.

I drink this water?

5.) Observe how animals are reacting to the storm, like the cutest squirrel ever outside my apartment.

squirrel, Hurricane Irene

This squirrel was hunkering down during the storm!

6.) Watch trees go down in your backyard. This one didn’t even make a sound.

downed tree outside my apartment

Chef watched as this tree went down

7.) Watch endless hours of hurricane coverage, because the storm could change direction at any time and you simply can’t miss it. And, the video of reporters in their bright yellow raincoats and floppy hats are priceless.

8.) Brave the elements and go out for dinner/drinks with friends and family. Be honest with yourself when you admit this outing is more about the daiquiris and less about the food.

margaritas, daquiries, drinks

My mom, Chef and I getting enjoying our drinks at a local Mexican restaurant

In hindsight, I should have gotten a larger drink...

9.) Take pictures of yourself in your hurricane gear. When you pose, be sure it’s something ridiculous looking like this.

rain gear, rain coat, posing during Hurricane Irene

Not sure what pose this is, but I wanted to show off my rain coat and boots

10.) Once you are two daiquiris in, have Chef record you pretending to be a news reporter covering hurricane conditions in Chester. Be sure to have a fun anchor name, like Catherine Grypable.

11.) Dry off from the hurricane report and proceed to drink wine and watch movies all night.

12.) Once the storm has passed, realize that 75 percent of the people in Richmond are without power and do the “I still have power jig.”

13.) Feel a sudden onslaught of survivor guilt for having come through the storm unscathed and offer your shower and couch to those without power. Yesterday, my sister used my shower, and last night, my stepdad slept on my couch. If you are without power and promise not to murder or rob me, you can use my shower too.

14.) Always stay alert. You never know when the next natural disaster will come your way.

Hope everyone faired okay in this weekend’s storm … take care out there!

Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.

44 Comments leave one →
  1. mysterious neighbor upstairs permalink
    August 29, 2011 11:23 am

    We were very fortunate during the hurricane but it did bring lots of tragedy. SWAT invaded our complex late yesterday evening because of a shooting that apparently happened in Chester during the hurricane. Yesterday morning SWAT was in a neighbor up town Chester because a guy killed his wife, kid, and self. Plus we had aftershocks last night. Okay so my comments do not relate to preparing for or weathering a hurricane but I was so excited I was home and able to read your post when you actually posted it I wanted to comment, love ya girlie!

  2. August 29, 2011 11:27 am

    Glad to hear that you made it through unscathed. Of course, if you hadn’t been so prepared it would have been a completely different story. That’s how these things work.

    • August 29, 2011 11:33 am

      Thanks, mydatingprescription. That is how it works, huh? I’ve got extras in case anything else happens … after an earthquake and a hurricane in one week, I think it’s probably better to just stay prepared 🙂

  3. August 29, 2011 11:36 am

    OMG! That video is hilarious! You found the puddles so much fun 🙂 Unfortunately, we get rain like that a LOT over here, so I spend most of my time avoiding the puddles!

    • August 30, 2011 10:02 pm

      But at least you get to wear pretty rainboots all the time! I always want to wear rainboots. They can be so cute and girly! And comfortable! I’d take that with some puddles 🙂 Glad you enjoyed the video. I’m such a dork.

  4. aunt patty permalink
    August 29, 2011 12:03 pm

    you are so full of life.. i love you!

    • August 30, 2011 10:01 pm

      Aww, Aunt Patty. I love you too. And I love that you said that – I don’t think I’ve been this way in a long time. It feels good to be happy.

  5. August 29, 2011 12:04 pm

    Here’s my update from suburban NY, slammed…No power.

    Had Cheetos (yes!) with a gimlet while reading Marie-Claire, also feeling so happy we still had power. And then we lost it.

    • August 30, 2011 9:59 pm

      Yay for Cheetos, yay for wine and yay for Marie-Claire…. now, no power, that sucks. I hope you guys have it back my now – I don’t know if you guys lost power for as long as some of the people here. It’s Tuesday night and they are still awaiting their power to come back!

  6. Lost in France permalink
    August 29, 2011 12:07 pm

    The video was great, perhaps you can do some more video features.

    Puddles are really only there for jumping in.

    • August 30, 2011 9:58 pm

      Lost in France,
      Ha! I wish!! We’ll see about video features. Some people do them and do a GREAT job and they are hilarious. I, personally, am not a fan of videos or pictures of myself. I’m weird – always hated it. I’m very self concious. So it’d be hard for me to do this regularly!! But – it could be good to force myself. Like I forced myself to watch this video – and take the chance posting it!
      And you are so right about puddles. I love ’em.

  7. August 29, 2011 12:43 pm

    Aww glad to hear that you’re safe and sound. 🙂 Looks like you had fun! 🙂

    • August 30, 2011 9:55 pm

      Thanks! I really did get lucky with this storm – as everyone else has been complaining, I keep thinking of what a blast I had. LOL

  8. mom permalink
    August 29, 2011 12:51 pm

    Great post kev said sorry for the mess he woke up two hours late for work 😦 were those aftershocks last night?

    • mysterious neighbor upstairs permalink
      August 30, 2011 9:25 am

      They were and we had them again last night, one woke me up 😦 Apparently I have some cracking in the walls from it.

  9. August 29, 2011 1:29 pm

    This was hilarious, Chef is cute, and you’re never too old for puddle hopping!

    • August 30, 2011 9:54 pm

      Thanks undertheabaya 🙂 Glad you enjoyed it – and I’m happy to have finally shared a pick of Chef on the blog 🙂

  10. August 29, 2011 2:29 pm

    Wow, Catherine Grypable, you even signed off this post sounding like an anchor. You only forgot, “Now back to you in the studio…”

    SO glad you survived relatively unscathed. In fact, if anything, it seems you may be better for the experience. Clearly more prepared, with a definite eye for fashion for future natural disasters.

    And Chef!?!? Adorable…


    • August 30, 2011 9:54 pm

      You are so funny. So much of me wishes I’d come up with some creative line for my sign off in the video – we just did it really quick, being silly, and I never imagined I’d ever WATCH it much less post it here. Actually, when Chef was filming it, I wasn’t even sure he was still taping at the end. LOL. I have this thing – I hate pictures and video of myself. So it was a BIG deal for me to post this here. A very big step for me!!

      Isn’t Chef cute? It’s funny, I thought of announcing this was the first time I had ever posted a picture of Chef where you could see his face – but I wanted to see if you guys would notice! Hilarious, I’m happy you guys did notice 🙂

  11. August 29, 2011 2:31 pm

    I’m rather jealous of your puddle jumping! I had nothing to splash around in this weekend but sunshine – not quite the same. Glad you came through unscathed!

    • August 30, 2011 9:45 pm

      Thanks, Mark. Those puddles were the best. Nothing like a pair of rainboots and a good puddle. 🙂

  12. August 29, 2011 8:40 pm

    Hahaha! Nice. You definitely did better than I did at prep work… Hey, I know those people! And their drinks are better than their heads! Tell them hi from me. 😉

    • August 30, 2011 9:44 pm

      I will tell them hi 🙂
      I didn’t mention on this post – the lake didn’t do so hot with the hurricane :(. You know the couple that we drank at their bar? TWO trees hit their camper. So so sad. I think the campground might even be closed this weekend for cleanup – and I don’t think they have power.
      Once it’s back and up though… we need to plan another weekend. Like maybe a fall weekend at the lake – fires, smores, pretty trees…. 🙂

  13. August 29, 2011 11:50 pm

    Hah! Your newscast is especially hilarious!!! The drinking part is very good advice. =)

    • August 30, 2011 9:41 pm

      Thanks, Larissa 🙂 Glad you found it funny. I know it was silly – I just thought it was funny how into the weather I was. Love me some puddles 🙂

  14. August 30, 2011 12:06 am

    Glad you survived the hurricane! And the news report is hysterical!

    • August 30, 2011 9:40 pm

      Thanks, Gizzy 🙂 That news report was way too spur of the moment. I should have practiced, had a good script and sign off, lol. We did it live! hahaha.
      Hope you guys are OK too!

  15. Random Cook permalink
    August 30, 2011 11:54 am

    That was my anchorman/cameraman debut and I killed it!! Nick Handsome is the next Ron Burgundy. Catherine Grypable….The Today Show is calling.

  16. August 30, 2011 2:34 pm

    I’m so happy I don’t live in a hurricane-area – I would never make point three… ;).

    • August 30, 2011 9:36 pm

      Haha, point 3 was actually where this whole list started. Actually the list started with the fact that I couldn’t eat my snacks because the hurricane handbook said I had to wait. Then when I filmed that silly video, I knew I had to find some excuse to share it with you guys 🙂 So I made a whole blog post around it!

  17. August 30, 2011 5:58 pm

    Glad you made it through– and with power the whole time!
    Your video was awesome! It made me wish I had puddles to jump in!
    And how lucky you had a cute chef to help you dry off 😉

    • August 30, 2011 9:33 pm

      Hehe, Kate. I’m SO lucky to have had power the whole time! And definitely lucky to have Chef too. He was a lot of fun during the storm 🙂

  18. August 31, 2011 8:40 am

    What do you mean I can’t open the Cheetos until it starts raining? But…but…what if….

    • September 1, 2011 10:09 pm

      Nope, no excuses or loopholes. Good thing they aren’t Pop Tarts though, right? 🙂

  19. August 31, 2011 9:19 am

    HA HA HA HA HA HA. Every part of it! I totally reprimanded my husband for getting into the hurricane snacks Friday night before the event! Then I scurried to the store in the morning to replenish. Def did the jig that we never lost power either! Love your “news footage” too.

    • September 1, 2011 10:08 pm

      Hehe, Jules. I had to force myself not to open all my hurricane snacks on Friday night. Sooooo tempting. I actually feel a little guilty drinking the bottled water now – feel like I should be saving it for the next natural disaster. Glad you liked the news footage. I’m still cracking up at how silly we were 🙂

  20. August 31, 2011 1:45 pm

    Don’t you think the umbrella was uncalled for considering the amount of splashing you were doing? 🙂

    • September 1, 2011 10:03 pm

      LOL, good point. But remember, I straightened my hair. I could change my clothes, but there was no way I was restraightening my hair! LOL – even in a hurricane I’m high maintenance.

  21. Tia permalink
    September 6, 2011 9:34 am

    Oh my god, i’ve been picturing Chef as a black guy this whole time!!

    • September 10, 2011 1:48 pm

      LOL Tia!!! I’ve heard that once before…. because of Chef on South Park, I suppose. LOL. Nope, not black 🙂 Glad to have cleared that up by finally putting a picture up. haha!

  22. September 8, 2011 6:51 am

    I like your guide book for hurricanes. I live in the hurricane area and the only thing that I could see was that you forgot the sweets. One needs sweets in a hurricane survival kit. No one is going to be baking with no power, so stock up. Sweets for the sweet. Like the name Chef and keep his pictures coming. Love the rain boots.

    • September 10, 2011 1:40 pm

      Thanks for the tip! Sweets are my absolute favorite so good call. I would have died without my chips ahoy during the hurricane 🙂

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