Friday, September 16, 2005


My vacation at Holden Beach, N.C. was cut short because of Ophelia. On Tuesday morning as my sister and I were heading out to buy some toys and games and return some videos, a man walked up to us with a paper in his hand: a mandatory order from the mayor to evacuate the island. They would be closing the bridge at 6pm and after that there would be no getting off or on the island. We had suspected this might happen after watching the weather reports over the weekend, but we kept praying Ophelia would stay out at sea. We packed up our belongings, all of them, and decided to go inland to Lumberton and stay at a hotel in hopes that the bridge may reopen the next day. The town officials had their meeting and decided to keep it closed for another day. After stalling as long as we could at the hotel and then at the public library (we tried a museum, but it was closed due to the inclement weather--it was only raining in Lumberton) we all decided to part ways and head back to our respective homes. Yesterday they reopened the bridge, and Holden Beach did suffer some minor flooding and strong winds, nothing serious, but it was too late to drive back...eight hours in the car with three children is not something you want to do four times in one week.

The local news stations in Lumberton thought it was big news that vacationers and residents of Holden Beach were coming there to wait it out. Channel 13 interviewed several of my family members and filmed me retrieving diapers from the car in the rain. Shortly after their crew left, channel 5 showed up asking if they could do the same... we declined. Five minutes of fame in a day is plenty for this family.We didn't stay in Lumberton long enough to see the report, but my sister told me yesterday she did find it here online.