So, only a week later, and I'm finally getting around to posting my pictures from Rita. Unfortunately, I don't have anything really cool. I was tempted to take some video during the worst parts, but to be honest, I was a big fat chicken. Each of the pictures below links to a bigger version.
This is a picture from, believe it or not, 5:30 or so. The trees were already bending about 30 degrees or so. One of the trees in the picture ended up completely bare. (My wife says it was because of the type of bark. I don't know squat about trees.)
This is from my front yard, and while it is a bit hard to tell, there was a lot more debris scattered around. We ended up with a pile of branches bigger than most cars, and what's scary is that every house (pretty much) for miles around has the same giant pile.
Ok, so nothing too exciting here, but notice the windshield, about 4 inches away from the rear-view window. There is a chunk of tree embedded between the tree and the rubber portion. It had to be pried out. I'm thinking a branch went flying, and must have had significant speed to embed a chunk of wood like that.
This is the tree I was talking about. The root ball on this thing was tremendous, at least 10 feet wide. As I mentioned before, the neighbor on the right got lucky. The leaves of the tree barely touched his garage door. Of course, the city came by, chopped the tree up, and put the pieces on his yard, so maybe he wasn't so lucky.
Last but not least - a "mistake." I think the flash caught the rain. I'm just posting it because I thought it was cool. :)