**UPDATED BELOW**

SUNDAY, 10:25 a.m.: We still don’t have power, but the 2-star general on the street behind us does. Mark was able to run extensions to get the frigerator turned on, because our generator didn’t turn over. Also got my dead phone charged, which is why I can write this update. Huge tree uprooted & crashed across the next street over. Clean up began with putting our deck canopy back up… More later…

Irene’s got a middle iname, and it’s Global Warming.environmental activist Bill McKibben

The area to the left of this big tree has a deep trench to move the cascading water that comes down from the yards above us. It's a work in progress, but it's great fun to sculpt. Now Irene has passed through and our trees made it, though one street over a huge tree was completely uprooted.

Irene’s wide spread is already being seen as rain hits New York, as well as the Beltway, where I live. We’re not supposed to get the heaviest rains until late tonight, early Sunday.

Daniel, aka “Dash of Dan,” said in a tweet exchange with me that he’s a-okay, though New Yorkers are expecting power loss later.

Thoughts go out to everyone today, especially those getting hit hardest. Stay safe.

Downgraded a notch to a Category 1 storm, Hurricane Irene made landfall on the Outer Banks of North Carolina just after dawn Saturday, with its leading edge already delivering gusting winds and showers to the Washington area and beaches from Virginia north to Delaware.

The brunt of the storm was moving north from Cape Hatteras and was expected to arrive in the Washington area late Saturday and into Sunday morning before heading toward New York and New England.

Pres. Obama has declared states disaster areas along the eastern seaboard, up into New England.

Wonder what Republicans like Gov. Chris Christie would do if the federal government wasn’t there to assist his state and help with funding what needs to be repaired afterward? Government matters and no feckless Democrat or Republican afraid to say so is worthy of holding office.

Oh, and as for Sean Hannity announcing yesterday that First Lady Michele Obama would stay behind in Martha’s Vineyard with her entourage. I’m sure his listening audience will hear a retraction from him on Monday, right? Having delivered it in the worst upper crust, faux British accent you’ve ever heard from a multi-millionaire, it’s the least he could do. But since the man has no class, he won’t. You’ve really got to wonder why the right-wing hates Mrs. Obama with such gusto, but considering they hated Hillary Clinton even more, I see a pattern. It’s any woman who isn’t subservient.

Would enjoy hearing your stories, what your hearing about the storm. So, chime in and share. It’s one hell of a way to end August.

Update: Just posted on Twitter an image of nifty head flashlight Mark used to fix radio, as we listen to Prairie Home Companion on NPR, which is all about St Louis, where I grew up. Walked to gage energy earlier after we lost power; xtra lrg umbrella held for a while, then had to collapse it & tighten my hood, as wind turned from raucous to riotous. …guess since power’s off we’ll have to pop the Duret. Weather olympics outside, but no danger (via BlackBerry).