Preparing For Hurricane Irene

It appears that we are going to have an unwanted visitor this weekend...Hurricane Irene is going to pay us a visit.
Veronica and I live on the Outer Banks and it looks like this hurricane will be hitting us and then going up the coast.
I have been watching the weather channel and they are telling everyone that this is a hurricane that needs to be taken seriously and could be the worst hurricane to effect the mid Atlantic states all the way up to the New England area in many decades.
From what I am seeing on the weather channel right now, we can expect a category 3 hurricane here with maximum sustained winds of 115mph.
Today I spent the day taping up the windows and then I had to move several wardrobe boxes filled with clothes from the ground level computer room up to the 2nd floor.
I wrapped the bottom of the boxes in plastic and placed the boxes in the 2nd floor hallway where there are the least number of windows.
Unfortunately my back is sore now from dragging those full wardrobe boxes up a bunch of stairs. I suppose that I could have taken the hanging clothes out and take several additional trips up and down the stairs but I figured that my back would have been barking at me even if I had done that.
We just were notified on the weather channel that all visitors in Dare County, which includes all of the Outer Banks, are mandated to start leaving tomorrow morning at 8AM.
I am sure that all residents on the Outer Banks area will have a mandatory evacuation.
We won't be able to go anywhere until after Veronica closes and safely secures the store...boards up the front of the store and things like that.
Because of where we live, which is adjacent to a bay, there are times when the water gets high enough to make the road back into town impassable thus leaving us stranded at our home.
Because of Veronica's managerial position, she has to be able to get to her store to check on it once the weather gets good enough and it becomes safe enough to travel about.
This leaves us in somewhat of a quandary. If she gets the official word that she can close the store on Friday, then we could go to Rocky Mount, NC which is about 150 miles away from here. It usually would take about 2 1/2 - 3 hours to get there but in an evacuation scenario, that travel time could be doubled due to all of the traffic leaving the area.
Once in Rocky Mount, we would most likely have to return Sunday to an unknown situation as far as what our home looks like or if it is even livable or if there is any electricity in the area, which would also effect Veronica's store. We could return to no place and nowhere to go to locally for the night.
The other option would be to stay in a hotel, which is of all places directly on the beach.
This particular hotel is where all of the weather channel personnel stay during the storm. The hotel has been around through several major hurricanes and has never had a problem except part of their roof was blown off during one hurricane and some beach facing room windows were blown in. They have never had any type of beach flooding in their hotel during any storm.
The hotel has generators for emergency electricity and they are one of the first locations to be put back on the electrical grid should the electric go out.
We were told that they have closed off all beach facing rooms to guests.
Logistically this would be the best option but on the other hand it could turn out disastrous.
Currently we have reservations at both a hotel in Rocky Mount and one locally at the Ramada Inn.
No matter where we stay, I will be blogging about this major weather event. If we stay at the local Ramada Inn, blogging from this beach front hotel will be intense to say the least.
We will know more about where we will be staying as the storm gets closer.
The next big chore will be packing the car up with everything that we can possibly take with us. As the weather channel always says...more updates to follow!!!
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