The Month of July

By , Covington, LA
July 12, 2001
It is saying on the news that there is a Category 5 hurricane heading straight for Texas. I really hope it doesn't hit because my life is so perfect here. I live in a small town right outside the big city. Everyone here is like family to me, especially Archie, my best friend that I am lucky enough to do paintings with. He is eighteen and a brilliant artist. I strive to become as good as he is one day. I feel like I am closer to Archie than anyone else in this whole world. Yeah, I love momma and papa, of course, but my parents and I don't get along like Archie and I do. Archie and I have a special relationship that no one seems to understand. There is never a dull moment between us. Everything bad in life just seems to wash away when we are together. All I can do is smile when he is around. It is going to be really depressing if I have to leave Archie, all of my friends at school, my home, my three wonderful horses, and everything else that I have, behind. I simply love living in Arlington. This is where I was born, where I took my very first foot steps, where I spoke my very first words; this place is where the past sixteen years of my life were spent. I don't know how I am going to be able to start all over somewhere else and be okay with it. If this storm does end up hitting Arlington, I will just have to look on the bright side of things. I can think of evacuating as a vacation I guess. I'm just going to keep my head up high and hope for the best. Everything happens for a reason...

July 15, 2001
I just got home from school, and unfortunately today was my last day of 10th grade at William E. Smith High School. Turns out the hurricane is definitely headed straight for Arlington. There are no ifs, buts, or maybes about it. When my little sister, Lexi, and I got in the car to go home today, the principal of my school told us to stay safe, and he wished the best of luck for all of his students.

Another thing that happened today was that papa's pickup truck broke down while he was driving through a really dangerous neighborhood. He had to get hay for the horses, and the battery in the truck just died randomly. My mom is a stay at home mom, so she had to go pick him up and bring him home before we got out of school. That way she could pick Lexie and me on time. I usually drive my little sister and me to and from school, but sadly I got my keys taken away because of a bad grade in Algebra. But anyway, I am just glad my papa is home safe and sound. That man taught me almost everything I know in life. He is the reason I am a state champion in horse back riding. I stopped riding last year because of an incident that happened at my last race. My horse threw me off his back, and I was almost run over by my nine other opponents. I hit my head and was in a coma for three days. I plan to start riding again some day, but for now, I just want to paint with Archie.

July 17, 2001
Tomorrow we are evacuating for the hurricane. I am not exactly sure how we are going to fit all of this stuff into one pickup truck. We have to get the luggage, momma, papa, Lexi, and me all jammed in a pickup truck that only seats four people. Right now, papa is outside boarding up the house, momma is taking pictures of all the rooms in the house for some reason that I don't have an answer to. I am in my sister's bedroom trying to help her pack all of her clothes, while trying to avoid tripping over all of the junk covering her wood floors. Lexie keeps yelling "KATIE'S GONNA TRIP!!! HAHA!" which is super annoying, but she is going to regret it when I leave and she has to pack and clean her filthy room all alone. To be honest, I really want to leave either way. I don't know how I am going to have time to pack for myself because the whole day I have been busy helping everyone else out. That is basically how things work in this family. You put yourself last and everyone else first. I wish it were different, but I think I can deal with it for a few more years. I am going off to college soon anyway.


July 19, 2001
Well the day has finally come. Everything is all boarded up. My mom and dad just finished getting all of the luggage into the car. Everyone is now ready to head off to North Carolina to stay with Aunt Regina. She lives in, practically a mansion, so there should be plenty of room for all of us to stay.
It is quite squished in truck, but I think I can deal with it until we get to the airport. I am really worried about Archie. He refused to evacuate. I am scared to death of what may happen to him. I cried on the phone trying to convince him to leave, but he didn't budge. He had his mind set on staying for this storm. He just kept on saying "Katie, don't chu worry bout me, I'll be fine!" I can't stand the feeling of him being in danger... I want him safe and with me...

July 20, 2001
Well I just woke up... well kind of. I didn't get much sleep last night. The thoughts of Archie stuck in that hurricane and my home vanishing away during the night just ran over and over through my head. I could mentally picture Archie... his bright blue eyes, and his jet black hair that was always long and messy. He was raised poor and couldn't ever afford to cut it. I don't think that is the only reason he didn't cut it though. I am pretty sure he thought it made him look cuter.

Anyway, the storm did hit last night, and it continued throughout the entire night. I have not heard from Archie since yesterday when I was yelling at him over the phone trying to convince him to leave. All I want now is a text from him or a call saying "Katie, I'm ok", is that really too much to ask for? I feel like my heart is crushed into tiny pieces. I cant lose him... not now, not ever...


July 26, 2001
It has been seven days now and I have not heard from Archie at all. I tried calling him several times but there is no connection. Since the minute we got off the phone, I have waited for a text or something to let me know he is okay. It is really weird that I haven't heard from him at all. We talk everyday, it's not like him to not talk to me for a whole week. Besides the fact that he knows I am really worried about him. I don't think he would do something like this to me... I can't help but get the feeling that he didn't make it... I am not so sure that I could accept the fact that he may be gone. He is really the only thing that matters to me... He can't be gone...

July 28, 2001
Well I went to go see my house today, and nothing was left. Everything in town is completely destroyed. All there is left of Arlington is the sign saying "Welcome to Arlington!". Other than that, nothing but grass, mud, and broken pieces of wood and house supplies. Unfortunately, there is no way we are moving back. The place is a ghost town, and my whole family wants to live somewhere a bit more populated. I guess I can't blame them for that. I mean it is going to be hard starting over somewhere new, but everything happens for a reason. We are moving to Boston, Massachusetts in two days. Our house is already bought, and the property in Arlington is no longer ours. Goodbye Arlington, Texas. Gunna miss ya!


July 3, 2002
Today was my 17th birthday, and I am pretty sure it was the best birthday I have ever had. Last year on July 19th, 2001, a hurricane hit my house, and what I thought, took away my best friend's life... This morning at around 8:00 am, my mom woke me up and told me that someone was at the door to see me. I threw on jeans and one of my cute black tops, rushed down the stairs, and when I opened the door, I saw a young man with a familiar face. His face was clean, and his hair was black and cut short. He stood with 17 roses in hand, greeted me with a kiss on the cheek, and whispered "told you I'd be fine... happy birthday" with that sweet country accent. Then I knew, this man was my best friend, my soulmate... Archie.





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