Thursday, September 15, 2005

Nature is fast to recover

Nature is fast to recover

Already our surviving trees are putting out new leaves

I noticed last night that there were some new leaves on one of the unharmed Pecan trees. I looked again this morning and was pleased to see that there is loads of new growth.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Let's talk about insurance - pt 2

Let's talk about insurance - pt 2

No flood insurance?

Apparently some of the insurance companies are telling people who lost their homes due to the storm surge from Katrina that they are not covered since the did not have flood insurance.

Guess why they had no flood insurance? Because the insurance companies told them they didn't need it!

Apparently the mayor of Biloxi has spoken the to the President asking him to slap the insurance companies about the ears. This is not a time to be messing people about when they have lost everything.

On a lighter not, we met with our insurance loss adjuster on Monday. He turned up with a smart little digital camera and proceeded to snap away merrily at the holes in our roof and the various evidence of water damage. Suddenly he stopped and started fiddling about with his camera to check and see that it was taking pictures OK. Everything he had taken was black. He fiddled and looked worried for about 20 miutes, complaining that he thought his daughter might have dropped it.

Eventually he gave up and made some hadwritten notes. He promised to be back yesterday then today (Wednesday) to take the pcitures. I'm still waiting. Hopefully he won't take too much longer...

I found my camera!

Yippee I found my camera!

It was hiding next to a bees' nest, surprise surprise

I managed to fight my way back through the woods behind our house today, after spending a couple of hours clearing a path. I was pleased to find the camera that I dropped last week. If you've been following this blog you will recall that I dropped it when I panicked and ran from an angry swarm of bees.

It has not rained here in a couple of weeks, so when I got the camera home and switched it on, it was working perfectly. The pictures on the CF card are all unharmed too. I'll post a couple of them soon ...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Pictures after today's cleanup

Pictures after today's cleanup

I really appreciate the help from the work gang today!

Here's some pictures that show the state of our property before and after today's cleanup. They don't show the full scale of the improvement made today, but I sure appreciate the help from the cleanup crew. I made sure they each got a little extra reward for their efforts ... I know they are getting paid by the county government, but I never asked or expected all the help they gave me, and they saved me at least a couple of weeks of work!

Let's talk about insurance

Let's talk about insurance

So far reports about insurance are almost as positive as reports about the electricity companies!

First of all, let me just reiterate what has been said repeatedly elsewhere. The electricity companies, and the help they have received from as far away as Kansas, Texas, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico - no doubt further afield, but these are some of the license plates I have seen - have done an absolutely outstanding job. Electricity is back on in something like 60% of homes and businesses who can receive power on the coast. Having seen the damage first-hand I am stunned that they have managed to make so may repairs so quickly!

Anyway - insurance. Apparently the insurance companies have been told that if there is any kind of dispute, then they should fall on the side of the insured, not the insurance company. Also Lloyds of London have said that they are able to afford to underwrite any losses, as the insurance companies have been buying sufficient cover to pay for losses. Finally FEMA (Fedaral Emergency Association(?)) has said that they will cover losses that were not insured.

All-in-all that means most people should be able to afford to rebuild. That should also include even the poorest households, but of course we will have to wait and see to be sure.

We reported our losses to our insurance company on Wednesday. Today - Sunday - we got a call from our insurance loss adjuster who is driving to Gulfport as I type. We are going to meet him tomorrow at 10am in Gulfport to inspect the damage to that house and sort out insurance and repairs. This is fantastic news as we were about to lease the house to a young woman who has a 6-year-old daughter. She lost her current apartment and most of her belongings in the storm, so she needs a roof over her head ASAP. Fingers crossed we can get repairs sorted very quickly, although we will have to watch out carefully for all the scammers who are supposed to be preying on folk right now.

What a difference a day makes!

What a difference a day makes!

The local government is helping with the cleanup

we were woken at 7:30 this morning as a fleet of trucks towing trailers, a bobcat and about 10 guys weilding chainsaws descended upon our street.

Since I was awake, and it was relatively cool I went outside and started chainsawing some of the downed trees. After a little while one of the girls on the crew came over and asked if I needed a hand shifting limbs ... well who am I to refuse help from a pretty girl? ;-) She explained that she was supposed to be flagging (directing traffic around the work crews) but since we live on a dead-end street she was kind of redundant, so she had time to help me.

Before I knew what was happening, she had called one of the guys over to help me with the chainsawing (I am a novice, and a nervous one). Then she got the guy with the bobcat over too... as I type they are sawing away and clearing logs and debris with the bobcat. Later today I'll post some pictures - before and after. Maybe some during the clean-up too, if it's not too dangerous to get in the way!