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Hurricane Nicole

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The worst hurricane to hit Bermuda since Fabian in 2003, which claimed 4 lives, sits just 200 miles outside of my window tonight. Nicole is currently a CAT 3 with sustained winds of 115 mph and will give the island a direct hit around tomorrow lunchtime, only the 4th direct hit since 1950.

Bermuda has been ‘welcoming’ tropical storms since time began and houses are built to a strong resistance and the people are exceptionally resilient and resposeful about big storms. As I was joking with friends in the supermarket earlier as we both browsed the wine section. Wine, batteries and water at a push is mostly all people go out shopping for prior to a storm hitting.

However Nicole has got people worried as we anticipate a long day tomorrow with Nicole slow moving and reaching us around midday approaching from the east of the island and producing 8ft waves and 8 inches of rain tomorrow afternoon alone. Storm surge and flooding could be bad, although a lot of the island is elevated, albeit less so on the eastern side. We actually live on the west side, but when the island’s as big as a toothpick those finer details don’t matter too much.

Think of us, and I will attempt to keep you updated subject to having power!

And after..

Outside the rattling of the windows has been replaced by the lullaby of the tree frogs as Nicole moves away from us and although the island is still under storm watch, driving around tonight you’d never know this place got battered all day by 125 mph winds. Bermuda really is a resilient little country.

Where we live the back end of the storm after the eye passed over around midday was no where near as bad as the first lashing we got. The east end of the island nearer the airport, Hamilton Parish and St George’s if you know it appeared to fare far worst. I think the airport and the causeway connecting it to the rest of the island sustained damage.

The roads are already being cleared and miraculously our power came back on tonight, seemingly one of the first areas. 95% of the island was without power this afternoon but BELCO are doing sterling work in getting homes back connected. I also had mobile service all day so thanks also to Digicel.

The only thing about the lights coming on was that we were able to see how much water we had in the house. Our landlord is a treasure and worked his socks off today but if only he fixed and sealed like he said he would, doors and windows, then we would not be having water lying all over our house. Our daughter’s playroom was a bugger to keep the water out of, as was our living room.

So plenty of clean up and we had some trees down in the garden but we are pleased we can mark Nicole down and she has moved on to annoy someone else. How she found this little speck of an isle in the gigantic ocean remains a mystery however.

There was damage around the island, my office had a window pop out causing a lot of water inundatation, but flooding and storm surge were a bigger problem. But importantly there sounds like no casualties and after three this year and four big October hurricanes in the past three years I hope Mother Nature now goes and picks on someone it’s own size.

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