Saturday, September 28, 1985

1985 Hurricane Gloria and Diamond Hill (9/27-28/1985)

Friday, September 27, 1985
Schools were closed today due to Hurricane Gloria heading our way. Last night the sky was a strange peachy-gray. It was now overcast and breezy. I did a load of laundry and started cooking, and took Kyle and Erich to their mom’s so they would be closer to friends. But an hour later they were back with Kent who was sent home from work. It got suddenly warmer, and after lunch it became windier. The wind was gusting, but it didn’t seem any stronger than a Great Lakes storm. But then we looked outside to see tree limbs falling to the ground which was littered with green leaves. We lost cable just before noon. The winds peaked at about 14:00 to 15:00, and the lights flickered. I was done with ironing when the lights finally went out at 17:00. The wind had died down, so we went out for a walk. A driving ban was in effect. On Whitford Avenue there were trees blown down and all the side streets were crisscrossed with fallen trees.
Whitford Avenue
River Avenue
(The photos make it look like it was still really windy!)
It looked like all the houses escaped damage except for a few missing pieces of aluminum siding. We walked to Academy, then Smith, and back to River Avenue, stopping at a darkened grocery store with an open door; the owner was in business all during the hurricane! We finished making Cincinnati chili on the gas stove and ate by candlelight. The lights came on at 19:30, but we turned them off to tell ghost stories.

Saturday, September 28, 1985
After breakfast we helped Pam B clean up the branches and leaf debris in the yard. Wayne K was on extra duty for Blackstone Valley Electric.
We drove to check out Modena Avenue, then continued to Diamond Hill State Park. There, in the hurricane debris, we were able to pick out hiking sticks. We headed up one of the ski slopes, and thus began our Rhode Island Mountain Climb. We sought the highest point in the area and looked around at the rolling hills and into the next valley of Woonsocket.
View from Diamond Hill
We found some fungi, including puffballs that had no puff left, and lichen.
There were some scruffy mountain flowers and I found a four-leaf clover. A dog followed us for the whole hike.
Dog, Erich, Kyle, Kent
Back at the bottom of the mountain, he found other friends to follow, and we took the car to Woonsocket for lunch at Burger King. Many places had masked tape Xs on the windows to minimize flying broken glass during the hurricane. We drove westward along the northern edge of Rhode Island to the Black Hut Forest Management Area. We began to hike down a dirt road, but had to stop because of a large tree fallen across our path. We got back in the car and thought to stop at Lincoln Mall, but it was closed due to no electricity.

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