Thanks to family and friends who have called to ask how my brother and his family are doing. They live in a small town outside of Houston, which was directly in the path of Hurricane Ike. There was not a mandatory evacuation for their specific area, so they had decided to ride out the storm.
While their neighbors have been pummelled and one family lost the roof of their house, my brother's house survived. Unfortunately, they're without power. They've already been informed not to expect to have any power for three or more weeks. So now they need to decide what to do. I'm trying to convince them that it's cheaper to come up here and stay for a while than to stay in a hotel for the next several weeks, even if it is a thousand-mile drive. (The gas will still be a killer, tho'). We haven't seen my brother in over two years. Keep your fingers crossed he says yes.