Many thanks to all of our readers who are concerned about Ocracoke as hurricane Irene approaches. I have been working all day hauling old bicycles and other clutter to the dump, taking lawn mowers and other equipment out from under my house and storing them inside, pulling my skiff out of the water, trimming limbs around the hill wher I'll put my car, etc.
I am planning to relax for about an hour or so before friends come over for a glass of wine and dinner (I made deviled clams). Then Amy & I have ghost and history walks tonight. There will be plenty of time to get my plants and a few other items inside tomorrow.
I just received the following notice from Hyde Co. Emergency Services:
"[A] state of emergency [has been] declared for Ocracoke and Hyde County mainland effective 5 AM, Wednesday, August 24, 2011. A mandatory evacuation has been issued for all visitors and tourists of Ocracoke/Hyde County beginning at 5 AM on Wednesday. A voluntary evacuation has been issued for all residents of Ocracoke/Hyde County beginning at 5 AM on Wednesday. There will be a mandatory evacuation for everyone for Ocracoke/Hyde County beginning at 5 AM, Thursday, August 25, 2011. Note: The mandatory evacuation starts for tourists and visitors on Wednesday at 5 AM and will continue on Thursday.
"During the state of emergency, the NC Ferry system will be on a first-come, first -serve basis for all vehicles open to Hatteras, Swan Quarter, and Cedar Island pending road conditions in those receiving counties. Schedules and toll collections are suspended during the evacuation order."
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is a history of the marine hospital on Portsmouth Island. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news082111.htm.