|Happy Thursday to all — I actually had to think about what day it was since the days since Irma hit are a blur and have been running together. I will not take up much of your time but I did want to give you an update about the aftermath of Irma since the media has moved on to other things.
Naples and Collier County as a whole is still a big mess….but the progress that FPL and cleanup crews have made has been remarkable. The only sounds in the air these days are the sound of buzz saws freeing power lines and cutting up fallen branches and trees….really BIG trees…everywhere. The Ritz Beach Resort alone has an army of orange clad workers on lifts all over that property cutting, cutting, cutting. As I look out our window, I just spotted three FPL trucks heading down Vanderbilt Beach Road. There are still people without power here and the Naples Park area is a perfect example. We could see trees and branches that had crashed against power poles and taken them down in several locations. Naples Cay was another area that as of yesterday still did not have power…and I could see why. Along with the gaping hole in the roof of the Naples Grande were power lines laying in the grass along Seagate next to the tennis courts. There must have been 7 FPL trucks parked towards the entrance of Naples Grande and around the entrance to Naples Cay. Friends who own a condo along Gulfshore Boulevard near Venetian Village just got their power back yesterday. As of yesterday, Port Royal and Aqualane Shores still did not have power. Mayor Bill Barnett & his wife, Chris, did not get power until Tuesday. The big question as you go through the checkout line at Publix or Whole Foods is “do you have power yet?” The water aisle at Publix has been picked clean again today. And believe it or not, after this HUGE storm, we are hoping for rain since the irrigation systems have been compromised and all plants and grass cannot be watered until it is fixed.
So here is the good news: Collier County is no longer on a Boil Water Notice. We can use our washing machines & dishwashers again since the water & sewer situation has stabilized. A BIG yay to that. Venetian Village is finally back open. Waterside Shops opened on Sunday — their restaurants opened on Tuesday. CIBAO GRILLE — an all time favorite FINALLY got power and reopened today!!! The Cibao situation was SO weird. The strip mall across the street on Neapolitan Way had power but Cibao’s side off the street did not. It’s like that all over the area. Anyway. Cibao is back and I am relieved for them. Sea Salt and Barbatella are open on 3rd Street South. Bice was open on 5th.
As I drove around town, it is still remarkable to see all the devastation (driving through Pelican Bay, Pelican Marsh AND Old Naples come immediately to mind)….and a wonder how much work has been done to try and return to normal….but how much work there is yet to do.
If you have any questions about Irma and the aftermath, feel free to email me….I will try to answer as best I can…or try and find out the answers for you.
More news as it happens —