Hurricane Winds and Lots of Damage

I live by the X


Hi and welcome to the blog.  We sure had a heck of a storm yesterday with 100+ MPH hours winds.  The Cedar Rapids and Anamosa area was heavily damaged by hurricane strength winds (100 MPH +).  I literally didn’t see the storm coming… while recuperating.

On Sunday things were crazy and I worked a grueling 7 hour shift without a break, then a nap, then went back for more.  By this time I was hurting good and ended up in the ER with an infection in my diabetic foot.  Now it means wearing one of these things around as much as possible dressing the foot wound… which looks a little like the weather photo above…


Not the most comfortable or attractive foot covering…


Feeling a little sluggish, I was going to take a nap yesterday and checked the radar, knowing that rain was headed this way.  The radar predictor said the storm would fizzle… I should have looked at the map above instead of taking a snooze.  When I awoke from resting, the clock said about 1PM but outside it was dark as night… Duke and Jenny were howling and seemed to know something was about to happen.  The tornado siren (located 200 feet from my living room!) sounded.

Jenny hid.  Duke burrowed down under the covers next to me.  He was terrified.  The trailer shook a number of times and shingles went flying past the bedroom window.  Normally I’m not one to be afraid of the weather – I used to do storm chasing – but I huddled with the kitty and kept saying the Lord’s prayer over and over, certain the trailer would be destroyed… but thankfully it was not.  The flash flooding in the ditch and over the road stopped people from driving.


Yard and ditch flash flooding…


When things calmed down (it seemed like an eternity), I hobbled out and noticed the elderly neighbor’s skirting had come loose.  I helped her fix it.  Mine was a mess (and part of it still is) but that can wait.


A fun thing to work on with a bad foot!


The worst of the news was the roof.  It sustained a lot of damage and water poured into the recently renovated rear bathroom, staining the ceiling and making a huge mess.



All in all, it could have been a lot worse.  I know a person in the country whose mobile home fell off the cement blocks that were underneath it.  That would have been terrifying!  A dear friend down the street had a porch swing fly off the deck and I saw her trying to wrestle it alone.  We got it put back in place.



Stopping for a Diet Coke, I decided to check on fishing buddy Steve.  He also was located at ground zero for this storm.  Steve lost a tree near his mobile home.  But in a nearby town where he owns a house, the garage was all but destroyed.  I hobbled a few more hours and helped him pack up and move some of the more valuable possessions.  Between the lingering back problems and sore foot, it was quite the night!


Smashed grain bin near Martelle, Iowa


There was a huge line of cars at the fast food restaurant in Anamosa.  The line lasted from 3PM until the place closed at 11PM.  Ideally, I should have been working but family and friends come first.  Most of the neighboring towns:  Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha were out of power.  Everyone flocked to our town to get gas…  Even trying to get a burger was almost impossible.  Steve had no power at home so he came over and we cooked up some steak – I had electricity.  Partway through, the big grill ran out of propane and we had to finish the meat on the George Foreman grill… but dang, the food sure tasted good… even though by that time it was almost 10:30 PM.

Okay, Mondays really do suck.   🙂

Today, Tuesday, is another day off… It’s about 8AM, the sun is shining and there’s some work to do outside.  Thank the Good Lord that nobody around here was injured.  Roofs can be fixed, skirting replaced, and branches removed.  But in our small, peaceful town people look out for each other and life goes on.  Ya gotta love Iowa and the friendly people here!

So once again there is no camping to talk about.  Monday’s plans changed abruptly!  Maybe next week before the blizzards get here?  At least the van was safe under the carport as pieces of shingles and large hail rained down.  🙂

Thanks for visiting today.  Safe and happy travels!  Hopefully the weather is better where everyone is right now.  Be safe!


This catfish was caught last week on the new pole purchased with a blog gift last Christmas. Steve was yelling, “Get the net, get the net!” It wasn’t needed. This pole has 52 pound test, braided line.


Brad and Jenny and Mister Duke
Jones County, Iowa


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About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"

4 Responses to Hurricane Winds and Lots of Damage

  1. my_vantasy says:

    Oh my goodness!! I am so thankful that you and the kitties are safe. How terrifying. Crazy how that was going on there and the weather is hot and humid here, but absolutely peaceful. Take care of your foot. Maybe I missed something, but I thought you were lining up a work at home opportunity? No camping going on here, either. ☹

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi and thanks for the note! It’s been kind of crazy. I was trying to line up some work-from-home stuff and then things changed at work. As soon as the big storm hit and knocked out power to Cedar Rapids, we were inundated (and still our) at work. The lines were so long in drive-thru that we had to lock the lobby. We just didn’t have the staff to help that many people without a way to meter it… not to mention the Covid laws… I’ve been putting in extra hours even with the sore foot! At the same time, the owner gave everyone a 2 dollar pay increase! I’m also going to get a promotion to a role with less time spent on the feet… So for now, the work-from-home stuff is on-hold. The room is mostly done and the Internet on so when the right gig comes along… Take care! — VT

  2. Jo Harmon says:

    I tried getting on your blog a couple of nights and it would not open.
    Well you sure had some un needed action around you and your place. I hope by now you are healed and the roof is being repaired. Will your home owners ins. cover the roof and bathroom repairs? Those storms scare me. Your a great guy to help out where you can even when you are in pain. There is a special place for you Brad.

    Take care of yourself

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi Jo! Thanks for the note. It’s been crazy here. I am squabbling with the insurance company. They didn’t call for four days and got kind of nasty with me because I did not crawl up on the roof and put a tarp or hire someone to do it. I didn’t know what to do. Oh well… That was sure one helluva storm – a derecho – with 100+ mile per hour winds. It tore up Cedar Rapids really bad. As of last night 80% of the town was without power. Scary stuff! Thank your for the kind words. I put in a lot of extra hours this week despite the foot pain. Our sales are very high right now due to the neighboring county being out of gas and power for a lot of people. Take care! — VT