We did alright during Hurricane Matthew.  The Cape Fear was flooded with storm surge, but I’ve seen more rain here in the neighborhood several times.

The winds started picking up a bit Saturday, but it still wasn’t too bad out for most of the day.  We heard about people losing power, but Tristen and I were watching TV (Hail, Caesar!, actually) when the power finally went off here around 8:00.  And when it went out, it went out in spectacular fashion.

We were sitting in the living room, as I said, when we heard a loud, short buzz sound and saw a shower of large sparks spreading halfway down our driveway.  It happened probably five or six times and Tristen did this sort of gasp-scream each time.  We went to look out the back window and saw a small fire on top of the phone pole back there.  It went out after the last explosion.

Check it out in the video below.

A video posted by Zach Dotsey (@dotsey) on

I called Duke Power and reported it.

A few minutes after that happened we were sitting in the candlelit living room when we heard another noise.  We were pretty sure it was a falling tree, and sure enough, we saw a tree covering one side of our fence.  We decided to go take a look at it and it was huge.  It went right down the fence line and almost got the shed.  We found out the next day that it was actually one large tree by the railroad tracks that knocked over two or three other trees on its way down.

We spent most of the rest of the night watching trees sway.  Tristen witnessed one fall in our neighbors’ yard.  There’s one that we’re pretty sure is dead and held up by vines that I’d swear was tilting to a 40 degree angle, but to our great surprise, it never came down.

Tristen was using her phone as an internet hotspot (Verizon announced hurricane-affected areas would receive unlimited data during the storm) and looking at storm news and such.  I started to get pretty tired around 11, so we went to bed.

The next day we got up and took a better look at our fallen tree.  We climbed up on it, which was when we discovered that it was actually several trees.  Then we biked around the neighborhood to check out the damage.  A house a few spots down from us had a huge tree down that might have hit their shed and narrowly missed the house.  Torrie and Johnny had a tree fall and brush up against their house.  In fact, some of it was sticking through their open bathroom window.

A video posted by Zach Dotsey (@dotsey) on

Tristen wanted coffee, but couldn’t get it without power, so we took a walk to the gas station up the road.  The place was happening, since it seemed to be one of the few places around this side of town with any power.  On the way there we saw the railroad crossing arms had snapped, and we saw a tree down on a house on the other side of the neighborhood.

We went to Laura and Craig’s for breakfast around 10.  Torrie, who had left before us, told us about lights being out and suggested we use some backroad, so we were going to go down Forest Hills.  The entrance to the neighborhood was blocked though, so we went around to get into it.  Turns out there was a giant tree down blocking the road.  There was another one at the far end of it.  It actually came from the house Blake and Stephanie Konny used to live in, so I sent Blake a picture of it.

We had breakfast and hung out for a bit then came on back home and picked up yard debris.  The line behind the house was being worked on.  Tristen went to check the power after they left and it wasn’t back on immediately, but it was one by the time we went back inside, maybe around 1:00.

Amanda told me she was planning on taking Milly out of town, possibly to her parents’ house or Winston-Salem, even though the Lambeths weren’t going to be there.  They ended up going to Durham to stay with Amanda’s cousin William.  When I talked to Milly on the phone on their way up there, Milly told me they were going to Rougemont.  I don’t know if she got Rougemont and Durham mixed up or if Amanda had told her it was near where Mum Mum and Pap live, but either way it was kind of funny.  I laughed and I heard Amanda laugh, then Milly got confused and said maybe they were going to Pittsburgh (where Amanda’s boyfriend, Jason, who was with them, is from).

Durham didn’t get the storm too bad, but a lot of towns east of Raleigh were flooded and without power.

Overall, it wasn’t a terrible storm to ride out here in Wilmington.  Plenty of people had power the whole time.  Eastern NC, Lumberton in particular, experienced some heavy flooding though.