Yesterday, my parents, my dogs and I left our apartment seeking safety during hurricane Irma in my grandparents’ house. Their house is almost like a bunker, we knew we would be safe there and didn’t want anyone to be alone during such a strong hurricane; we were preparing for the worst.
By the time San Juan started feeling the first effects of Irma, the house felt like a dog shelter, hosting four dogs, my brother’s and mine. The rain and the wind weren’t very strong so we were able to be outside in their gated terrace where the dogs could feel free. When it started raining more and the wind got stronger, we went inside. The dogs were in the hallway and we always tried to have someone with them so they wouldn’t feel alone.
We also had a radio, a must have during hurricanes, where we listened to all updates on Irma’s location, the effects throughout the island and what to expect. We also played a few games of Dominos, also a must during hurricanes and we ate, a little bit more that we usually eat, but that’s what you do when you’re bored and stressed.
By the time we went to sleep, everything was pretty calm but we heard on the radio that it was not over yet. I don’t know if it got stronger or at what time it stopped but I slept like a baby. When I woke up today it was over, there was no rain but it was really hot and the ground was covered with leaves and some fallen trees.
On the way home I saw the same, some trees lost leaves, others branches, some trees were on the ground, and then there were others that just looked like they weren’t here during the hurricane. Apart from that, I didn’t see any harm to any buildings, houses or structures. I heard about a few broken windows but that was a rare case because most people had prepared and covered windows and doors.
Now, after the storm, there is no wind blowing and it hasn’t been very sunny all day, it’s very hot but doesn’t feel hot like when the sun is shinning, very humid.
Before coming here, Irma hit Barbuda, St. Martin and Anguilla on Wednesday, nearly destroying the islands with winds up to 185 mph. Next in it’s path were Puerto Rico’s two island municipalities Vieques and Culebra, where she also showed no mercy. When Irma reached Puerto Rico, it cause less harm than we were all expecting. Several businesses are open, refugees from shelters are returning home and power has returned to several locations on the island.
Now all we can do is hope Irma doesn’t do any damage anywhere else.