Galveston Saturday Night

Panoramic view of Galveston, Texas ~ Saturday evening, February 20
Photo by Galveston Chaser (Click to enlarge)


A week and a few days ago, winter came to the Texas coast.
Tonight, the snow is gone, the lights are on,
and from a distance Galveston seems to be shining in her accustomed way.
Days and weeks of work will be required to repair the damage,
but, tonight, glasses were raised in tribute to the smaller victories.
It’s the Texas Way.

Comments always are welcome.

66 thoughts on “Galveston Saturday Night

      1. I love the idea of ‘a good morning for singing’ – for birds and humans alike! It’s a lot warmer here today too and we spent a lovely afternoon just out walking around the local area.

    1. Galveston Island was 90% without power, so it’s especially pleasing to see images of it with lights (and heat). There’s going to be a whole lot of gardening and plumbing going on in the coming days.

  1. As unpredictable as the comings and goings of ice and snow are the videos that YouTube cues up. The ones it suggested to me after your chosen song involved Asleep at the Wheel, Carol Burnett, Rachmaninov, and “Somewhere in Time.”

    1. I’m often amused by the selections offered by the Great Algorithm in the Sky. A few months ago, I kept being offered interviews with pro athletes and links to wrestling programs. I have no idea how I triggered those, but they finally went away.

    1. Winter’s always been a season of wide swings for us, but the cold “snaps” usually are just that: brief crackles of cold that end in a couple of days. This time, a lot of people were prepared for the short run; unfortunately, it turned into a long run! But it seems we’ve turned the corner now — until next time.

    1. Did your baby azalea make it? I saw a great photo of a blooming bluebonnet covered in snow — down near Uvalde. There are a lot of plants that may be tougher than I am.

        1. Fingers crossed! I’ve noticed today that some of our landscaping is browning up as the day goes on: especially the palm trees, and the tops of hedges. But the Indian Hawthorne and some other shrubs are nice and green toward the bottom, so we’ll see.

    1. When I took a little peek and saw those 70s in your area forecast, I sure did smile. I suspect it won’t be long until you’re doing a little waltzing across your part of Texas.

    1. The phrase “asleep at the switch” had crossed my mind, but either will do. I was out and about just a bit yesterday, and I’m surprised by how green we still look. I suspect some damage will become more evident in the days ahead. I noticed this morning that the fronds on the palm outside my place are beginning to turn brown. It’s trunk is quite substantial, so it’s hard to say whether it will survive or not, but if it has to be taken down, there are a couple of bald cypress next to it, and they’ll be fine.

  2. “It’s the Texas Way.”
    That will, I’m afraid, mean that nothing will be done.
    Have a wonderful Sunday,
    P.S.: Thanks for the link to a song of my most favourite Country-and-Western band.

    1. Well, perhaps we need to replace the non-resident members of the ERCOT board with Texans who have a different sort of commitment to the state. For example, Sally Talberg, Chair of the Board of Directors, lives in Michigan. A third of the board lives out of state. Also: board members are appointed by a nominating committee made up of (wait for it) — current board members. Even with a girl at the top, it’s the prototypical old boys’ network. Equating ‘the Texas way’ with nothing getting done isn’t fair.

        1. I suppose the good news is that they’re about to be put under the kind of microscopic examination they’ve avoided in the past. It’s too bad the suffering of so many people was required for it to happen.

  3. Lovely cityscape. I am taken by the green glowing reflection that is so much larger than its point source. So glad that things are approaching normal although I am sure that will take more than a few days. I’d like to think that a few of the heads that were asleep at the wheel will roll but voters have short memories.

    1. There are idiots and incompetents everywhere. The good news is they don’t predominate, even though they too often have positions of power.The county judges, local water boards, dedicated linemen, and assorted community leaders have helped us function again. Many of my county’s towns have functioning water systems as well as power now, with no need to boil water. It’s only the testing backup at the state lab that’s keeping my town from dropping the boil order. I have full pressure again.

      I know I’m a little touchy about some of the misinformation and hype I’ve come across. Around here, we’re taking care of one another.

      1. Not so fast, darlin’. Actually we are hearing lots and lots of stories about the good being done by average folks in Texas like the furniture store owner who took in people from the cold and the grocery store owner whose power failed causing the registers to not work so they were all free to go home with their bags filled. The plumber who was going door to door thawing and fixing frozen pipes to avoid flooding gratis. Lots of stories. As you point out, the big story here is average everyday people banding together to be sure their neighbors survived without enormous suffering wherever possible. We are hearing that. It’s been on the evening news for several days now. Texans are setting a good example for the nation.

        1. Let me add one more example of “help” offered: one of or local motels [I believe it was the Holiday Inn] offered to take in people who could not stay at their freezing homes … for $85/night!!!

          1. That reminds me of the LaQuinta in Nacogdoches. We stayed there during Hurricane Rita. The parking lot was full of people living out of their cars because there weren’t any other rooms in town. The manager kept one room empty so that people could shower, charge their phones, and so on. And when we arrived, after the famous fourteen-hour-should-have-been-three trip, it was the manager at the front door with coffee and juice, waiting to help us find our room and get settled.

            1. To be clear: those huge bills are a bit of a quirk. Some people chose plans linked to the wholesale spot market, choosing the accept the risk for whatever benefit they offered. Companies like Griddy calculate people’s rate continually through the day; I believe I read it’s every five minutes. When the wholesale cost skyrocketed, so did the bills. If people didn’t get out of that unregulated market before the ‘cold’ hit the fan, they were in trouble. Even on the retail market, people can make a choice between variable and fixed rate plans, and people on fixed rate plans will continue to pay the same rate.

            2. That is quite a gamble. I have never taken a loan, especially when we had a mortgage, based on a variable rate. When refinancing we waited until the rates were at a relative low point. There’s no free lunch and the low interest that one gets with a variable plan is a hidden trap. Still, the prices I have heard mentioned are stupefying…especially when created by an emergency. And most often the wholesale market is tied to speculators…folks who don’t know a day’s honest work.

        2. Mattress Mack! He’s a legend in this town, and deeply beloved. He doesn’t concern himself only with Houston, or Texas, either. During the last spate of Louisiana hurricanes, he loaded his trucks with supplies and sent them across the border. And look at this: he’s establishing a tuition free vocational school on part of his property.

          1. As to politicians (and others) sayin “I made a mistake”: they seem to think that they can be as stupid as they like because just uttering that sentence undoes the stupidity.

            1. A mistake is forgetting to close an html tag, or leaving the baking soda out of a recipe. Some miscalculations involve forgetting to divide by two. Political miscalculations are of a different order entirely.

    1. It’s going to be an interesting process to watch. Repairing the plumbing is one thing. Repairing some of the brokenness in governmental structures may be more complicated. I’m not sure what kind of tools will be required, but I guess we’ll find out.

  4. Thrilled to hear things are getting back to some semblance of normalcy, Linda! “It’s the Texas way,” indeed! Watching news reports that interview residents and show the damage isn’t easy. I have to say I’m glad I missed a harsh winter when I lived there. Here in the Midwest, we seem to be more prepared for that sort of thing (probably because we can count on it occurring more than once every eight or so years!)

    1. We can cope with some conditions. We have sand and salt trucks, for example, and when icing happens, everyone knows to be careful on the freeways and bridges (or to avoid them). And we can cope with cold, but we’ve never had the entire state dealing with cold, ice, and snow for such an extended period of time. I didn’t suffer, but I had heat for all but about four hours. I’m certainly going to do a little extra gearing up for the next time — and give thanks if it never shows up.

      I was tempted to go out today to see what’s happening, but it’s still gray, even though warmer, and there are plenty of chores here at home. I just got all of my plants back outdoors, and have cleaned the bird feeders and water bowls. The laundry’s caught up, and the kitchen’s clean. This feels like heaven!

    1. I love Asleep at the Wheel, and I love Galveston, so the pairing made me very happy. You know what is making me even happier? They just lifted our boil water notice, it’s 72 degrees, and I’m moving plants onto the patio in a tee shirt and jeans. Ahhhhhh…..

  5. There’s bumper sticker I see periodically “Texas swing isn’t dead, it’s just Asleep at the Wheel.” Ray Benson is a national treasure. In any event, I’m planting some pepper and tomato seeds tonight and am glad to hear your temperatures are fine and your plants are back out!

    1. What a great bumper sticker. You’re right about Ray. There’s a video of him in his younger days (c.1990) doing this song live on The Texas Connection, and one of the commenters said, “Thanks for sticking to your guns Ray. Y’all youngsters can have your tractor rap, long live western swing.” My feelings, exactly.

      Happy planting. I finished some repotting this afternon, and discovered a kalanchoe start has put out exactly one little bloom — not a cluster, a single flower. Spring’s on the way.

  6. It looks like Galveston weather is coming around like ours is. We had a high of 73 today and it’s the nicest evening I’ve seen in months. It looks like you’re doing just as well. That’s a great shot of Galveston, and Asleep at the Wheel is hard to beat.

    1. We warmed up like you did; the wind coming off the bay still is cold, though, and our low tonight’s going to be about the same as the water temperature: 48. If the wind switches to the south, the water will begin warming, too.

      The best news of the day is that the boil water advisories have ended. Once Houston was cleared, we were, too. I’ve never been so happy to do laundry.

  7. Galveston’s is not the beach you want to see snow on. I have not yet seen any pix of my first cousin 2x removed playing in the snow (she’s 5). They live about 2 blocks from the beach, but then, so does practically everybody else in G-town. .

    1. The best snow I ever saw on the Galveston beach was after the Christmas Eve snow in 2004. That was a heavy snowfall, and the photos were amazing — especially the one of the surfer dude snowman.

      Five is just the right age for snow. Of course, fifteen isn’t bad, either — or fifty, for that matter. Actually, I would have been thrilled to have a little more than we did, but it would have been much more pleasant had we been able to play it in and then come in to some warmth.

  8. I’m glad you are through the worst of this. I know there will be loads of clean-up and damage repair but at least now that can begin. Nice to hear Asleep at the Wheel this morning!

    1. How’s this for ‘through the worst of it’? Despite the thousands of people looking for plumbing fittings and still hoping for potable water, power’s back for almost all the state. This map has been fascinating to watch.

      By yesterday afternoon, I was working in a tee shirt and capris, and since I’m waaaay down at the end of a dock, I went totally non-professional and kicked my shoes off. A week ago, the high was 28F. Yesterday, it was 77F. A difference of 49 degrees!

    1. There were yard crews and homeowners out everywhere yesterday, assessing the situation. Things like banana trees are mush, and some of the palms will certainly have to be taken out. But it’s interesting to see so many of the hedges and native plants. They’re cold-burned, but it looks like primarily damage to foliage. And when some of the landscaping beds got uncovered, the pansies looked as perky as ever. Hooray!

    1. “Go Texan Day” is the official kickoff for the weeks-long Houston Rodeo (and stock show). And when supporters of our local pro football team cheer, they say “Go, Texans.” So you’ve summed up a good bit of our culture with just two words. Go, you!

    1. I’ll tell you this — the Texas spirit is thawing rapidly. There were a lot of smiles yesterday. Coping with problems and disappointments is a little easier when the sun is shining.

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