06 February, 2011

Yasi, another cyclonic event and her aftermath

Yasi was a huge category 5 cyclone which at one stage was heading just north of us. This is the worst case scenario for us as on the east coast the strongest winds and greatest rain come on the south side of the eye. Then it looked like we would experience it straight on and in the middle of the night. Fortunately for us the cyclone headed a bit further south.

The photo above shows Maria in our cyclone cubby. The table just fits between the washing machine and the shelves in the laundry. Behind and to the side we close off with mattresses to slow down any flying debris. In the shelf we had food and water, first aid supplies, torches, radio and a few tools in case we needed to dig our way out. We also had a waterproof bag with a couple of changes of clothes, money and important papers in case we had to evacuate after the storm passed. I am glad we prepared so well as we were able to relax. I went to sleep listening to "Eine kleine Nachtmusik" and Maria said she enjoyed listening to my soft breathing.

Only one fatality so far and that person seems to have become overwhelmed by fumes from the diesel generator he was running in the small closed room where he sheltered. No serious injuries ether which is great but many people injure themselves when cleaning up
The most significant damage to our house occurred as I was closing the LAST window. I pulled off the clasp. An immediate repair was called for and completed. There was a little leak in one corner of the house. I have been on the roof and sealed anything which looks like it could be the problem but still cannot understand how the water got in.
As evening deepened and the winds strengthened this pair of Northern Sedge Frogs seemed to use the tape on the windows as a stairway.
The afternoon of the cyclone Maria and I were walking in town when a sea bird flew over. Believe it or not I did not have my binoculars around my neck! It is a standing joke in our village that I remove them to take a shower. I think it may have been a Great-winged Petrel. The next morning I went to Tinnaburra on the local water reservoir and saw more birds not usually there: 4 Common Terns, 1 Lesser-crested Tern, 2 Crested Terns, 5 Gull-billed Terns (not all that unusual), 1 Pied Cormorant and a Little Egret. Saturday afternoon I found this adult male Lesser Frigatebird flying around and then roosting for the night.

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