This morning my family and I left our home for a high school shelter nearby.

Ask me anything about what a hurricane is like!

Not sure what decent proof would be. Here's a view from the desk I'll be sitting at all night long.

Edit: Because power is out now, I'll be answering questions in spurts to try and save battery since no one knows when it will come back on.

Edit Edit: Holy shit this blew the fuck up! I am actually back home since Irma's blowing game is weak now and our area was spared more than we had anticipated. Our home miraculously did not lose power and is still intact despite some serious power outages in this area. Trees and live powerlines are in the road so that was probably the scariest part of this whole thing. Thanks so much for the questions and for keeping me entertained during a long, sweaty night! I'll still answer questions as long as they keep coming in!


Comments: 513 • Responses: 73  • Date: 

thehighrollers1072 karma

Isn't it ironic? When there are classes in school, you stay home for homeschool. When school is out because of storm, you finally go to school.

pwniess539 karma

I've been cracking up about it all night lol

deathtoferenginar417 karma

Bored yet?

Any queasy nostalgia and desire to run, screaming, hurricane be damned?

Any pleasant memories surfacing in your brain?

Not sure I'd want to bunker down in a school.

pwniess421 karma

I've never been this bored in my life.

Nah I'm pretty chill.

Just really excited to get the hell out of here tomorrow (hopefully).

deathtoferenginar107 karma

So much for my bad live-action horror movie - everyone's trapped in there for a couple weeks and goes nuts and stuff.

Damn, damn, damn!

They've got a chalkboard. Write dirty limericks on it. Fish through the teacher's desk, see if they have a pint of whiskey sitting in there - or a dildo - exciting!

Explore elsewhere, if you can, acting professional - find out their secrets. :p

Gotta be some damnable amusement to be had whilst being unexpectedly trapped in a school.

pwniess75 karma

Hahahaha now that sounds fun! I don't think my parents would be too pleased with me though lol

joannie_pepperoni39 karma

Make some friends your age. And then make a movie or something

pwniess87 karma

Is that how 25 year olds make friends? I really suck at it lol.

joannie_pepperoni44 karma

It's hard for any adult, but really, you're in a great situation to make friends IF you're stranded with some cool people you'd like to be friends with. Likely everyone is as bored as you are, so it's the ideal time to strike up a conversation.

ETA: Just you know, read social cues. Some people may be too stressed out and not want to interact with others.

pwniess37 karma

I'm almost the youngest one in this room so not a whole lot of opportunity unfortunately lol

pierroil25 karma

You can probably find some board games. Schools always have games for when there's a rainy day. Some games are simple but they pass the time. Good luck. I'm in Jacksonville and we were spared. Good luck.

pwniess47 karma

Thanks! It's pitch black in this bitch so feeling around probably isn't a good idea. It's as if everything fun was taken from this room on purpose..

high_side363 karma

Y u no backup battery?

Is the school on high ground? Sand bagged? How do they know it won't be flooded?

Would you rather fight one Irma-sized crocodile or 100 crocodile-sized Irmas?

pwniess306 karma

I have some backups with me thank god. School is not on high ground but not in a flood or storm surge zone so it should not flood. Both of those options are too spoopy 4 me.

edit cause spelling in the dark is real hard apparently

RussianTankBias190 karma

Where in Tampa? I'm riding it out in my house in a zone C, borderline D.

pwniess142 karma

Brandon actually

whitewallsuprise156 karma

What did you have for lunch ?

pwniess411 karma

A piece of school pizza. It was actually pretty damn good. I never attended school because I was homeschooled as a kid and I always thought cafeteria food was bad but it was lit.

Xenon808141 karma

Was it a rectangle? That was the bomb when they used to serve it and I'd always get 2.

pwniess202 karma

It was a thicc normal slice that blew my mind. Can a big girl get another please?

Ballsy_McGee96 karma

Hell yeah, Big girls are da bes

pwniess128 karma

Oh hey there boi

DTMan10123 karma


pwniess109 karma

Even in a natural disaster u savage af

doofalastic131 karma

I actually evacuated Tampa because I feared the shelter would be unsafe, and overstuffed.

Is there any risk to damage or flooding to that shelter now?

Is the storm really as bad as the news is showing it (I can hardly find anything for my area, everything is all city news)?

About how many people was your shelter able to fit?

Is there fear for shortage of food / water? How tight are the rations?

Was this a shelter that allowed pets? If so, how much of a burden is that for (who I'm assuming) someone who is without a pet?

Is there any fear that the world outside of the shelter is getting washed back to sea in that area? (I saw you're staying in a shelter in the Brandon area, so anywhere between shelter to home).

Before the power went off, how apparent were they making the situation outside? Did they have news being broadcasted all over, or in a specific area of the shelter? How extravagant were the stories that fellow shelter residents were spreading?

Has there been any outbursts from residents of the shelter due to any sort of rationing that may be happening, sleeping arrangements, etc? (As someone who has years of experience in customer service, I have to imagine that this is something going on in there).

Has anyone been kicked out of the shelter yet?

Sorry for all of the questions, I'm just genuinely curious, especially since I've never been in a crisis like this. Luckily I was able to evacuate, but I know not everyone has that luxury. I wish the best for you and your family, and for everyone in that shelter. Stay strong ❤️ I hope the community will bring itself through a crisis like this. Also, sorry if these questions have been answered already. And and also sorry for formatting, currently on mobile.

pwniess284 karma

It does not feel unsafe at all. We are not at risk of flooding because it is far from the flood zones.

There have been no alterations that I've seen or heard of. Everyone has been very nice and we all just understand that none of us want to be here but it was necessary.

No shortages of food or anything. Most people also brought their own as well. We missed dinner (came too late) and were still given food. There are water fountains for water.

Before the power went out, the weather was on dozens of TVs through the school and the employees of the school have been giving us weather updates via an intercom system.

No one has been kicked out to my knowledge. This shelter is not pet friendly but the ones that are do not house people in the same area. They have rooms for dogs, cats and other animals specifically.

I believe this shelter can hold around 700. Most of the high schools around here have the same limit.

I hope I answered everything!

Edit: I gotta add that there was a sketchy altercation that occurred with a mentally unstable elderly man and a drug dealer was trying to get some new clients to try his LSD after I originally responded to this comment. It did make things feel slightly unsafe.

mypasswordisfoobar27 karma

Awesome answers

pwniess25 karma

Thanks :D

pwniess52 karma

Also I forgot to add that in addition to the teachers that were working as volunteers, there were cops there looking after things as well.

Ayjayran115 karma

Poor you, my back aches just thinking sitting in one of those awful school desk chairs for more than an hour! So are most of the people in classrooms? Seems like any other pictures I've seen of shelters, people are always in the gym or some big space like that.

pwniess111 karma

The gym is also full of a few hundred people so they put the rest of us in classrooms.

Kataclysm95 karma


pwniess138 karma


Jamesgepps92 karma

My mom is in Tampa and I can't reach her. What do I do??

pwniess168 karma

Don't panic. Cell service is garbage right now. We're also out of power. The storm moved farther from Tampa so we are getting very lucky tonight.

Jamesgepps58 karma

Thank God!! And thank you kind sir.

pwniess133 karma

I'm not a dude but you are super welcome 😁

goonsugar90 karma

What's your guys' plan if your home is uninhabitable after the storm?

pwniess150 karma

Hoping for the best.

PMAX774 karma

Is it hard to sleep?

pwniess170 karma

Impossible. It's hot as hell in here with crying babies, screaming kids etc.

ericchen172 karma

Have you tried opening a window? /s

pwniess27 karma

I legit wish I could.. the temp is beautiful outside.

PMAX716 karma

Do you have to sleep on the floor?

pwniess58 karma

There's not enough room for that so I'm sleeping at a desk. Most people are sleeping on the floor.

rhinoplzno8 karma

How many people in there?

pwniess17 karma

500 or so

Murdvac72 karma

Has the storm killed you?

If so, how did you die?

pwniess249 karma

Yeah dude I'm dead as fuck. Tree branch came through the window and got me right in the tits.

rhinoplzno29 karma

Right in both tits!

pwniess41 karma

I miss them already. Pour one out for em.

pwniess6 karma

What the fuck haha

searanger6256 karma

Did they check your. Immigration status?

pwniess69 karma

Nope, no ID or anything like that.

phallic-baldwin52 karma

What blows harder, Irma or The Bucs?

pwniess224 karma

Your mother.

Mr-Baseball35 karma

How bad is the weather down there? I have family down there and I hope Tampa doesn't get it too bad, even though the eye is predicted to go straight over Tampa. Also, is there a surge yet?

pwniess54 karma

It's not something you want to be caught outside in. Even though it will be a cat 1 when it arrives in Tampa, it's still some serious wind. I'm not sure if there is a surge yet but it will definitely happen soon. The whole county is losing power fast and our first responders have stated that they cannot respond to any 911 calls for the rest of the night.

Mr-Baseball16 karma

Well, I hope you guys are all safe and make it through this think ok. Best wishes from Rhode Island

pwniess8 karma


spicardo287 karma

I have family in Tampa and they said they're cutting the power prior to it arriving to prevent fires and whatnot.

pwniess4 karma

Teco had said prior that they were going to do short rolling blackouts but they then stated they were not going to do that and didn't.

throwawayinakilt32 karma

Which school are you in? We thought of going to Riverview High School but ended up staying in the house.

pwniess39 karma

Bloomingdale High

LucLuong27 karma

Holy shit I go to that school. I believe you guys are staying in the 300 wing?

pwniess19 karma

Small world! Yup.

LucLuong43 karma

Before school was cancelled I had to move desks for people coming in to use the rooms as shelter. Crazy that someone made ama about it haha

pwniess56 karma

Stay in school, kid.

throwawayinakilt15 karma

Actually that is where we were going to go, not Riverview. Did they fill up? It was half full when I checked on it yesterday morning.

pwniess16 karma

Yup it filled up around noon. We were lucky to be let in anyway.

EvanHarpell7 karma

I'm at home up here in Brandon. It's getting bad, but so far is still have power and cell service.

pwniess11 karma

Damn you're lucky! Most of Brandon is out.

2529335928 karma

How is the smell?

pwniess87 karma

It's got that nice high school feet smell going on..

aCapedBaldy27 karma

So you're trapped in a high school with a bunch of scared angry humans who are going through an existential crisis? Is it weird to relive High School in such vivid detail?

pwniess15 karma

Ha! I never went to high school but I bet that was pretty close.

MonisAnwar26 karma

If I hang my laundry outside on an unbreakable line (just play along), will the water and winds clean them up?

Enjoy school btw. Be safe.

pwniess38 karma

Yes. Irma is real good at getting shit clean.

MattTheIdiotBoy24 karma

Any word on pinellas park? My grandfather is there and his stubborn ass said he was just going to board things up, hang out, and let the storm pass.... but I know it's on a peninsula with the gulf on one side and Tampa bay on the other...... he's a tough old bastard but he's stubborn as hell and I'm a bit concerned.

pwniess27 karma

The storm moved East away from that area so that is a good thing. I believe storm surge is the biggest threat to that area but if he wasn't in a mandatory evacuation zone then he's likely just chillin like we are.

EmptyRedData23 karma

I love World War Z. One of my favorites. Sucks that you don't have any power or light to read with.

What's your favorite part so far?

pwniess69 karma

That fact that I'm back home now with no serious damage!

Take4222 karma

What's the bathroom situation like?

pwniess30 karma

We used the bathrooms at the school as if we were students. Wasn't too bad.

Avlonnic233 karma you had to raise your hand and ask permission? Glad you are safe and thanks for sharing the experience with us.

pwniess19 karma

Edit: I just realized you were joking.

jimmycarr13 karma

I think they were just making a joke

pwniess7 karma

Holy shit i'm retarded..

PrinceOfAgrabah18 karma

I evacuated Tampa. I'm in South Carolina now. What do you think about how much Irma's path has been changing?

pwniess21 karma

Since it changed, it has been no biggie. Some good gusts but nothing like what he thought we were gonna get. Naples took that hit for us. We could have stayed home and been fine.

pronosaurius14 karma

How many days of food / supplies do you have?

pwniess22 karma

3-4 days worth at home.

gristlecat7 karma

Do you think that will be enough? I mean, depending on damage I wonder if you can even get more supplies?

pwniess47 karma

It's more than enough for the storm we got. Now if I were in Naples where they got hit with the full force, it would probably not be enough but luckily there are relief groups there to help. Tampa avoids direct hits like I avoid responsibilities.

NorrisChuck10 karma

Who is watching tofu?

pwniess17 karma

Tofu was safely secured in a confined area at home because the shelter would not allow him to join me.

Rodrigotron8 karma

Any updates. Are you okay?

pwniess26 karma

I'm good! It was not bad here really. The storm moved and spared us greatly. I'm itching to gtfo now.

mili10025 karma

how long do you expect to be there?

pwniess17 karma

Irma has fallen apart for the most part now so we actually left and have made it home!

gooblagoobla5 karma

How many other people in Tampa are staying? Assuming you can look outside, is it a ghost town? When are people expected to return?

pwniess9 karma

Most people who were not in a mandatory evacuation or bad flood zone stayed. It's a ghost town now because people are home.

keke_fresh4 karma

Whats the atmosphere like with all the people there? Like is everyone freaking out or is it rather calm? They look rather calm in the picture, but is everyone kind of like on edge? You said that you're in a classroom... how many people are divided into each room? Or is it like you come into the shelter and it's a free for all you just kind of pick where to go?

I always got this like homely and cozy feeling about shelters, but after reading some questions and answers on your thread, I don't know how homely a shelter can feel lol I guess it's just the sense of all these people coming together.

I really wish you the best of luck and I wish you and your family the best!

pwniess7 karma

People were calm but were still on edge and constantly checking for updates/info/checking up on family. They put 20 people in each classroom and the rest in the gym. The areas were assigned but you could pick where you wanted to go. It was so so far from homely or cozy. Thanks!

squigglewiggle4 karma

why does power go out in the storm? is it because the power line to your specific area got damaged or does the state purposely cut power in the storm areas to reduce fire hazard?

pwniess13 karma

Power line damage and transformers blow.

roboconcept3 karma

Wildest story you've heard from other evacuees?

pwniess14 karma

uhh probably the guy who was trying to sell LSD/weed etc. to anyone willing to listen..

Deadmeat5532 karma


pwniess27 karma

The shelter we're in is designed to handle a Cat 5 storm. She has weakened drastically though and is now supposed to hit Tampa only as a Cat 1.


What made you decide to go to a shelter as opposed to either evacuating or staying home?

I'm riding the storm out at home in Daytona Beach area right now with my husband and toddler. Good luck and I hope your home is fine when you get to go back!

pwniess4 karma

Thanks! Our home made it.

There were no hotels that weren't completely booked and the gas stations had all closed down so we didn't want to risk getting stuck on the roads with nowhere to go.

poohslinger1 karma

Is there anything you'd want to do differently if you're ever around Florida for another hurricane?

pwniess4 karma

Been here most of my life so it wasn't my first and won't be my last. I won't be going to a shelter next time.

GrandZebraCrew1 karma

Are you glad you evacuated or are you wish you had stayed home? What do you wish you'd known say 12 hours ago?

pwniess3 karma

Wish we would have stayed home BIG TIME but we played it safe because our lives could have been at risk. No one knew that the storm was going to shift away from us and weaken so quickly which spared us from the eye of the storm that we had anticipated.

EyesWideOhShit1 karma

Do people bang in shelters?

pwniess1 karma

I doubt it.. it was pretty elbow to elbow in there.

Cevar71 karma

Why didn't you leave the state for a couple days and rent a cheap motel or stay with family members, before the storm hit?

pwniess8 karma

Leaving the state is not as easy as it sounds. We have limited highways to get out of here and they were packed all week with horrible traffic while our state also ran out of gas at the same time. Finding a hotel that wasn't book was also nearly impossible.

xtheory1 karma

What are you all doing to keep yourself busy and your mind off the storm?

pwniess8 karma

I was reposting dank memes like crazy

whitewallsuprise-7 karma

Why are you home schooled ?

pwniess5 karma

I'm in college now.

whitewallsuprise2 karma

Have you ever made any sketchy college dorm room food ? maybe you are not in a dorm, but when in college and sometimes all one has is a couple strange ingredients... odd food gets made.

Any one pot noodle surprise recipes you concocted ?

pwniess8 karma

I don't live in a dorm but I'm still broke and like to get freaky with my ramen recipes from time to time..

whitewallsuprise0 karma

Why were you home schooled ?

pwniess12 karma

Because my parents love me.

whitewallsuprise2 karma

I'd hate to be around my family that much.

pwniess8 karma


lethalcup-18 karma

Instead of sitting in some miserable shelter, why didn't you just pack some food, get everyone in the car, drive a few hours north and relax in a hotel?

pwniess12 karma

Because it wasn't originally coming to Tampa and once it did, every hotel out of the way of the storm booked up fast. Our state also ran out of gas and traffic became worse than it's ever been.

david_chi-55 karma

The storm is not that bad...have you thought about just going home ?

pwniess38 karma

No because the winds are over 50mph and set to reach gusts of 100 in the next few hours. Dozens of trees have fallen in my area and the police are no longer responding to 911 calls. Not worth the risk.