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Three months later

July 27th. Exactly 3 months after the tornado pitched a big ol’ fit all over Tuscaloosa, two happy endings occurred.

1. My friend Kaye and her husband closed on their PERMANENT house. Theirs was destroyed and that’s where we were the first two days, trying to salvage what we could. This is from the doorway of their place.

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They were able to stay with friends for a few days until they found a rental house in the University student housing area. Three months to the day, actually, close to the hour the tornado hit, they closed on their permanent location. I’ll have more pictures of the big move in!

2. The disaster relief effort on The Slab of our church closed down. The need had greatly decreased and it’s time to close it down and move forward. Most people have found permanent shelter and are able to take care of basic food and supply needs.

A few pictures of the past 3 months at Hargrove Road.

First day, Friday, April 29th. Mr. Mike drove in the night before after hearing about the damage.

church2

Saturday, April 30

churchrelief

Sunday, May 1.  Donations from around the nation.

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Later the week after. More tents.

church

The last day.

church 

Meals served from the food tent. Does not include the number of meals from private donations of food/service during the first 4 weeks. That number would bring the total closer to 50,000.

July 27, 2011. Mr. Mike is closing down after living here for 3 months and cooking daily. He’s going home for a day or two then headed to Texas in preparation for Tropical Storm Dan.

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Signs of life moving on, as it does. As it should.

Mail still runs at 304 Hargrove Road. We even have mail jokingly addressed to

                               “The Slab at Central Church”.

mail mail

This tree captured my attention daily that first week. It was hauntingly beautiful.

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Obviously, it wasn’t finished with its purpose. I’m so glad the owners left it. They did trim off a couple of outer limbs that had cracked almost through.

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More trees fighting back. Forest Lake was surrounded by hundreds of trees. The ones that had nothing left but trunks were cut down for wood. This one still had branches so they left it alone.

tree tt5

Recovery is going strong. We still have moments of disbelief but again, a new normal takes over and then another normal and we just move through states of coping with what’s left of town.

And well, here’s a lovely video of yours truly. They snagged me after I finished a crossfit workout and a particularly nasty run. Yes, I wear goofy head wrap things to crossfit to catch the sweat. Hats don’t work as well.

Video of nasty looking me

Y’all enjoy that. I have zero dignity left now. 😀

Life moves on and we either move with it and embrace the tears and laughter or we get stuck and feel nothing. Give me anger, tears, and sadness over numb any day. At least then I know I’m alive.

endure

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Julia

Sunday 31st of July 2011

A wonderful post! I am so excited to see the changes that happen every time I see a photo or visit Tuscaloosa. I can't wait to see the new growth and changes when we visit this week.