Tropical Storm Darby made its way through the Hawaiian Islands on Sunday and managed to cross every one of the islands! That hasn’t happened for more than a hundred years. The storm itself was pretty benign, that is, until it was well north of Laie. And then it really broke loose.
A storm tail erupted over the Kualoa Mountains (these mountains bisect the Island of Oahu) with horrendous rainfall and incredible lightning and thunder. Honolulu was particularly hard hit with significant flooding closing most of the major roadways and stranding a couple hundred motorists. Up here we were presented with a magnificent lightning show that lasted for several hours. The lightning, thunder, and downpour eventually subsided about 4am Monday morning.
The winds weren’t very heavy, perhaps 35mph gusting to 45. They did knock down a number of palm fronds and a plethora of leaves everywhere. The Royal Palm trees lining the road and walkway to the Temple look like they’ve been thoroughly thrashed. The groundskeepers at the Laie Temple spent a very long day on Monday cleaning up the aftermath of this little storm.
Our main concern had to do with local flooding down near the seashore. Eight of our sister missionaries are housed in two apartments right on the seashore. The area where these buildings are located is in a bit of a depression. If that started to flood, they needed to evacuate to higher ground. What flooding occurred was pretty minor and all was well.
Last month the Church sent out new smoke/carbon monoxide detectors to be installed in every missionary apartment. All of our apartments have a smoke detector installed in every bedroom. I check them every transfer when we do apartment inspections. While we don’t have any apartments that have any appliances that could malfunction and generate carbon monoxide, I obediently installed them in every apartment. We had two of them fail. One went off in the middle of the night and wouldn’t be silenced. It just gave off a continuous shriek, not any of the shrill beeps it would be giving off if there was an actual problem. The sister missionaries eventually had to cut the battery wires to silence the device. The other one wouldn’t function at all. After all of that, every apartment has the original smoke detectors as well as the new smoke/carbon dioxide detectors. Then, a couple of days ago, a couple of sister missionaries serving in Michigan were awakened in the middle of the night by their detector signaling that there was a problem with carbon monoxide. They called 911 and went outside. Then realizing they were probably the only ones in the apartment building with a carbon monoxide detector, went back and woke up the residents to get them outside probably saving a number of lives. The story is located here (this story is definitely worth a couple of minutes to read!!). That by itself has paid for all of these detectors wherever installed! Meanwhile, every missionary has to log into the Church’s missionary portal every month and certify that they’ve tested the smoke/carbon monoxide detector. If they don’t, their leaders eventually get notified to do a followup. This is just another real reminder to me that the Church takes our well being and safety very seriously.
After a very busy eight days, we have a Preparation Day tomorrow. At the moment I’m not planning on setting my alarm clock. I wonder if I can actually sleep in?
‘Til next time! Ta ta for now!