Driving around the devastated Florida Panhandle after Hurricane Michael tore through the area, it’s easy to get caught up in the destruction and loss. I snapped a picture this past Saturday that resonated hope rather than despair. The afternoon sun shining down on workers restoring power was prolific. Linemen from all over the country are working day and night to restore power to the region.
According to Vox, “As measured by barometric pressure, Michael was one of the most powerful storms to ever make landfall in the US.”
Having lived through it, I can attest to its strength and fury. I never want to experience anything like that again. It was one of the most frightening things I’ve ever witnessed. I’m still trying to make sense of the carnage I’m seeing.
Since Hurricane Michael ravaged the Panhandle of Florida, volunteers from across the country have been arriving daily to aid victims in the hardest hit areas and surrounding counties.
Linemen from companies across the South and Midwest have arrived to help restore power to the more than 800,000 residents without electricity in the region.
According to the Washington Post, “Michael didn’t just break objects, it upended everything. Life in Panama City is still completely disrupted, with many lacking power, running water, reliable cell service and access to the Internet.”
As a life-long resident of Panama City, the devastation is surreal. It’s like I went to bed and woke up in an alternate universe. Nothing looks the same and won’t for a long time.
On the bright side, water has been restored, although a boil notice is still in effect. Being able to flush the toilet without hauling buckets of water inside is a definite perk! No power yet, but crews are working around the clock to rectify that.
Following the devastation, Mother Nature has been cooperating with cooler temperatures and little rain, so it’s not unbearable.
Our families are safe and working hard daily to clean up and rebuild. All in all, I have to say I’m proud of my community and its resilience. Even more, I’m grateful to all the selfless volunteers and workers who continue to aid us.
How do you say thank you to people who leave the comfort of their homes to travel into devastation and work tirelessly to relieve the suffering of complete strangers? There are simply no words.
©️ Jennifer Nelson Fenwick