First Sentence Friday! Chapter Six

It’s that time of year when those of us who live in certain regions of the U.S. are told to be prepared.  We’re told to have enough water for three days, canned foods, batteries, flashlights, and a generator if you can afford one.  From June 1st to November 1st, it’s known as hurricane season.  We tend to do what we need to do, and then forget about it until…there’s a disturbance in the lower southern quadrant of some weather forecasters map, followed by an ominous, “we’re gonna keep an eye on it.”  When “it” gets a name, it can get interesting.

Over the next few days, we might exclaim, “Have mercy but that thing’s getting big!”  We pay even closer attention as predicted landfalls are shown.  We stayed tuned in 24/7 to our radios, TV’s and cell phones.  Soon, there’s more information thrown at us from watches to warnings, to dropping barometric pressure, to possible categories (size of hurricane) and on and on, and all of it delivered by breathless weather forecasters making predictions that border on apocalyptic.  It’s enough to give one a good case of the hives.

We’ve all had our share of experiencing Mother Nature at her worst, and fortunately, I’ve come nowhere close to what I put my characters through in THE ROAD TO BITTERSWEET.  When the historic flooding occurred in 1940 in our mountains here, I am not sure if they had any way of knowing.  Perhaps by word of mouth from a reliable source who had access to a radio, but I also have to think some were caught totally off guard when the rain poured down so heavy, and the flooding began.  It happened.  And then?

One has to wonder, what’s worse, the event itself, or the aftermath?

CHAPTER SIX

The dirt path to the cabin was blocked by a gigantic fallen oak.

 

A Publishers Lunch BUZZ BOOK Fall/Winter 2017, and a SIBA (Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance) Trio Pick for 2018, THE ROAD TO BITTERSWEET releases December 26th, 2017.  

***I’m using #FirstSentenceFridays on Twitter and tagging @Kensington Publishing Corporation.  Follow along and tweet out/share if you’d like!***

 

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COMMENTS

  • Susan Peterson

    July 21, 2017

    Reply

    I’ve often thought about what people went through during weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes before we had Doppler and satellites and weather channels to inform and warn. And in remote, rural areas it would have been worse. We can still get caught unaware, and we still have significant losses of life during storms, but hopefully lives have been spared due to the warning systems we now have in place.

    • Donna Everhart

      July 21, 2017

      Reply

      You’re right – like that flash flood in Arizona the other day. Last I saw it killed nine people – and I can’t recall how many were still missing. Think it was a swimming hole that got washed away. Another friend from Texas said that’s the thing, it’s the flash floods that catch people off guard, unaware still. I can’t even imagine! It’s like tornadoes. Weather forecasters can predict possibilities, favorable conditions, etc., but they can just crop up anywhere. Scary stuff.

      • Susan Peterson

        July 21, 2017

        Reply

        That flash flood happened in the town where my sister-in-law lives. We lived in the desert for ten years and know how quickly they can rise up! Very scary! A weekend of heavy rain out here in South Texas two years ago made a river rise so fast and high, sweeping away families who were vacationing, and many lives were list. Water is dangerous!

  • lilacshoshanwp

    July 21, 2017

    Reply

    It is very scary, Donna! I hope for you and yours that the scary predictions will NOT come true, fingers crossed! Excellent and inspiring writing as always! And hooray for Janet Reid’s mention. You do everything right! Admiring you…<3<3<3

    • Donna Everhart

      July 21, 2017

      Reply

      I always hope that too, Lilac. The peak of hurricane season here is September, early Oct. (I’m supposed to be in New Orleans mid-Sept – yikes) But yes, it can be very scary. I had no idea she’d done that till a day later! It definitely made my me feel great! <3 <3 <3

  • Craig

    July 21, 2017

    Reply

    Damn I hate it when shit like that happens. Seems that I always leave my chainsaw home at the wrong time, even though it loves to scream defiance at the aftermath of storms.

    Even though people still help neighbors and strangers when the going gets tough, I can’t imagine the energy needed in the days before chainsaws and trucks with winches.

    I have had to drive up and clear the drive of my common law brother in law twice. He has a cabin so far in the woods that his internet connection is by satellite. Just running the cable for internet up his drive would cost over 20 grand. I won’t even bring up getting it to his drive way from the main road. Even with a chainsaw and winch it was a job. A two man saw and a pair of mules sounds like a nightmare, especially if the neighbors have problems of their own. That always seems to be the case.

    By the way, the Army Corps of Engineers say that New Orleans is safe.

    • Donna Everhart

      July 22, 2017

      Reply

      I know, doggone oak! The nerve! I sometimes wonder if I wouldn’t love to live in such an isolated spot as your brother in law. A show that we used to watch was THE LAST ALASKANS. It came on for a couple years I think, and had to do with that some family land in Alaska where, once the last child is gone, the government is no longer allowing anyone else to move there. (they don’t say why, least not that I can remember). Talk about remote. Closest neighbor might be 40 -90 miles away. Same for a town. Supplies flown in by friends, or family. Those folks truly live as if it was the 19th century. You might have seen it. As to living there, for the beauty of it – yes. For the work involved just to eat, stay warm – no. If I’d been born there – yes. To move there and decide that’s where I was going to live – no.

      Anyway, you got it, the Stampers in my story will be hindered by the simplest of things. Lack of tools.

      • Donna Everhart

        July 22, 2017

        Reply

        Oh, and as to New Orleans – ha! So I heard…


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