Greetings from Grand Cayman island, the future home to hurricane Paloma (got his big toe in here already!).
When I got up this morning, and heard the winds howling, I thought it unlikely we'd get off the island before the storm closed things down. Turns out I was (at least mostly) right.
The group all had switched flights to those leaving at either 9:30 or 10:30 this morning. As it turned out, not quite enough . Going outside around 5:45, I found Jason and Michael (MTJO). Micheal and I had planned to leave for the airport around 6:00. I told Jason I thought we should be leaving ASAP, and I think he and Cheryl took my advice (if only I had! Michael was ready to roll too, but waited for me, which ended up costing him a flight!). Coming out of one of the other rooms, I saw tail lights driving away that I think and hope were Jason and Cheryl. If so, they got out, and were the only of the Searaiders who got to leave the island before the hurricane.
Michael and I headed for the airport (normally a half hour drive) over 3 hours before our flight. After a huge traffic jam and a huge line inside the airport, around the time we were to depart we were told the plane was "closed". Meanwhile, Britt and Todd were still in the traffic jam, and so were a convoy of Ty, Whse, Thor, JMoors and Kathy. They called on my cell phone, and we let them know their flight (and now ours too) were a no go.
Since MTJO and I had turned in our rental cars and could not rent one ("we rent no cars now..."). So we were at the mercy of the Cayman DOT folk dealing with the stranded travelers.
The rest of the Searaiders made their way back to Compass Point where they are now (Michael is on the phone with them now, it hasdn't been cut off yet). We were put up and bussed by the Camanian DOT in a very nice beach front (! NOT the best of places to be maybe?!) condo (still unsure if we're being billed, or American Airlines is, or if it's gratis.....).
And so we await the storm. Should hit at it's strongest around midnight. We're flying home on Sunday.
I hope and am pretty certain we'll alright with this, the Compass Point folks are likely to get hit a little harder (we're in the 7 Mile Beach area, they are on the East End). But the Levoy's were the smartest, getting out when they should have!
More reports as power permits (expect interruption of water and power, possibly cell service in addition to the wind/water etc.). I'm using my Sprint data card for internet, and have NO IDEA what the international roaming rates are going to run me (I have a guess it'll involve a couple appendages ). Wish us luck, but hey! Can't keep the Searaider's down!