Hurricane, I mean Tropical Storm Irene has come and gone and we made out about as well as we could have hoped. For us, located right on the coast, it was a lot of wind and rain but no flooded basement and no damage to the house. Others weren't so lucky, especially in western Mass. and New York and New Jersey. One of the families we vacationed with in Florida last week saw their house flooded, not just the basement but the first floor as well, because of overflowing river banks and a burst dam. Their house may be a lost cause. Absolutely devastating.
As for us, I spent most of the day hanging by the computer and watching out the window as a huge 40+ foot high tree in front of our neighbor's house swayed back and forth in the wind. It was leaning over the street and I was convinced it would fall, possibly hitting the house across the street and a vehicle parked in the driveway. But nothing happened, the winds died down and we sat down to dinner. We were just finishing up when we heard a loud crack and a BOOM! We ran to the window and sure enough, the damn tree fell. Actually, it was the heavier part of the tree's branches; the main trunk and skinnier branch is still standing. Amazingly, the tree managed to miss the parked car by inches and hit nothing but street. I was so excited, I ran outside barefoot to document the carnage. As I type this, a removal crew is finishing the cleanup, but here's some shots of the fallen tree.