Wednesday, July 4, 2012

After the July 2012 Derecho Storm: A Call for Service to all

Hello, again, I know it's been a while since I last picked up the blogger's pen.  While the initial cause of my absence was do to many a real life concern that had taken most of my attention, most recently I have accepted a job with Rackspace in Blacksburg, VA starting soon.  I can't wait to start my endeavors there, learning new stacks, new technology, and helping test the things they have coming down the pipe.  I may post more about this transition at some time, but for now I'm playing the blogging idea by ear.

However, before I put the pen down again for a bit as I transition to something new, I have one more thing I feel the urge to write about.  For those not aware, this past Friday, the 29th of June, 2012, the eastern US was hit by a massive fast moving derecho storm which caused destruction on a vast scale and scope.  A state of a emergency was declared in many states, including my home in West Virginia as high winds knocked down power transmission lines, felled trees and limbs, hindered communications, affected water supplies, and a host of other acts of destruction which are still impacting these areas.  My home in Summers County, West Virginia was in an area heavily impacted by this storm, and we went nearly 72 hours without electricity, internet, television, or other modern conveniences like air conditioning.  What's more many of my neighbors lost several hundred pounds of stored food ranging from meats to produce as the thermometer climbed to near 100 Fahrenheit on some days, with brief showers providing only a small respite.

As work crews, continue into their fourth or fifth day of activities in areas where repair times for an entire county may be measured in days or weeks instead of hours, it is easy for many to get hot under the collar, angry at the slow turn around times, gas shortages in some places, hard to find ice or bottled water, so I ask that everyone in these affected areas look to your neighbors.  Help each other, and try to be smart with any purchases you make during this crisis.   This storm is at the least a storm of the decade in terms of damage, but may approach century levels when you consider the amount of Fuel, Food, and equipment deployed in this massive repair effort.   So look to your fellow man or woman, and if it is in your ability to help out even in a small way, please do so.

I have a post I'm working on to illustrate one major testing issue that came to my awareness this past weekend, but I want to take time to revise it a bit before posting it.  So to those who cannot yet read this due to power outages, fear not, help is coming.  For those in unaffected areas, consider donating to your local food banks, and the families of those brave workers who are travelling far from home to help those who are in need.    A donation of food may be very helpful for a food bank or pantry already tapped and stretched to the limit as people in surrounding states tax a system that is already struggling to provide for so many unemployed families.  I encourage you to consider donating a couple canned goods or non perishable items (as defined by your local pantry) in support of relief efforts, not just in these affected areas, but in your home towns and counties, as well as for the areas even now affected by the wild fires in Colorado.

For those who have already given of their time and resources, I want to thank you for your help and offering, those of us who have experienced this crisis may never be able to thank you personally for your hard, tireless, and perhaps round the clock work to help those of us whom you may never even see face to face.  Thank you all.

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