"A little bit of heaven on earth...."
With Waves of Thanks - Ian + 27
Over the last four weeks the outpouring of help and support has been like nothing I have experienced before. As always, there are looters and people trying to take advantage of others, but I have been lucky enough to see the good side of many strangers. A grocery store, while damaged and still without power, opened and sold items at a discount, a new neighbor came over to help repair my roof, a café employee asked me what I needed (other than my hot coffee!), a man down the road is offering free chain saw sharpening, a company giving away free mattresses, and a man brought a tractor down from Wisconsin to help people clear the debris from their properties. The Red Cross is delivering hot lunches to damaged neighborhoods, the Cajun Army has given away free food and water, the Army Corps of Engineers has a Blue Roof Tarp assistance program, and Beach Talk Radio has been broadcasting helpful information 24/7.
It's still shocking to see how large of an area has been significantly affected by the wind, rain, and waves of Hurricane Ian. You can see blue tarps on roofs in neighborhood after neighborhood, mile after mile of wet furniture, drywall, and scrap metal piled high along the roads, bark stripped from trees, lone pilings and concrete slabs where homes used to sit. A local library housed members of the National Guard, and a temporary hospital has been set up in a former Sears store. Everyone, literally, that I have talked to since Ian hit, have been impacted in some way. They have been affected locally, or have been worried from afar for family, friends, businesses, homes, or a favorite vacation spot (Kahlua!) that holds many happy memories. It’s still shocking to see the devastation and realize all that was lost. We are all in different boats, but we were all in the same storm.
Although it’s been 27 days since Hurricane Ian, we are still in search of reliable answers to basic questions. The damage to Kahlua requires multiple wind and flood inspectors, adjusters, and engineers to complete their assessment before we can confidently plan our next steps. We can no longer access Estero Island on Mondays and Tuesdays and must work with the availability of the overloaded professionals who sometimes show up late or not at all. In the meantime, we are receiving Board votes, cancelling utilities, services, contracts, and backorders, processing recent transactions, making phone calls, responding to emails, trying to get a handle on our USPS mail delivery, working with CenturyLink on the Kahlua phone system, preparing for the Annual Meeting, meeting with adjusters & engineers, and navigating through the Town of Fort Myers Beach’s requirements.
If you need to get ahold of us, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will respond when we can. Please continue to submit your ballot votes to so that we can reach our quorum and have a productive Annual Meeting on November 18th, 2022. If you have already donated to John’s GoFundMe, thank you so much. It is very humbling, and every dollar is so appreciated. He has a roof tarp in place, but it will be some time before a roofer will be available to fix the damage. Please continue to check the Kahlua website for updates, where you can also find a link to a website if you would like to purchase a cute Kahlua T-shirt. The front has the Kahlua Beach Club logo, the back shows “FMB Strong”, and $17.00 from each sale will benefit Kahlua. Thank you to all who are supporting the employees and Board members of Kahlua Beach Club. We have been working hard these past 27 days doing all we can to find the answers we all want and need