PALO ALTO, CA – The American Red Cross has set up a relief fund for the victims of last week’s mild wind that affected hundreds of wealthy residents in Palo Alto.
“You never think that it can happen where you live but there can be harsh weather, even here in this very, very rich neighborhood,” said Palo Alto resident Kelsey Mitchell. “Dare I say that this place looks so out of sorts – a disaster zone even. Look at that tree over there. It’s slightly leaning. I just don’t know what to think anymore. You see this type of stuff on the news, but you never think it’ll happen to you.”
More than three thousand residents of Palo Alto were affected by the mild wind. Some residents had lawn ornaments fall over while some experienced damage inside their homes as papers located near open windows were strewn across rooms.
“I came home from a sailing trip and I found about four or five papers lying on the floor in my office,” said Palo Alto resident Max Power. “I specifically told my maid to make sure all windows were closed but she apparently didn’t listen. She’s fired now but what am I supposed to do about those papers on the floor until I find another maid? Luckily, the Red Cross will be sending over some slav… I mean, help in the next couple hours. Bless you Red Cross and all of you that have given to this fund.”
The Red Cross fund was established to help alleviate the stress and emotional pain of those Palo Alto residents that are now faced with the difficult task of rebuilding stacks of paper or cleaning up their lawns.
“I have a Tiffany Hummingbird Feeder that got blown over,” said Sharmine Garmine. “The gardener isn’t scheduled to come until Tuesday. What am I supposed to do until then? Pick it up myself? Hardly. That’s what immigrants are for. But hopefully the Red Cross can do something to alleviate my suffering. I’ve had to spend most of my time in one of the south facing wings of the house so I don’t see the Tiffany Hummingbird Feeder lying out there like a piece of trash.”
In addition to the Red Cross fund, Palo Alto Mayor, Yiaway Yeh, declared a state of emergency shortly after the wind died down, asking the federal government for funds to cover the expenses of cleaning up the affected areas.
“As a community, we need to come together in these trying times,” Yeh said. “In all my years, I’ve never seen this level of destruction. I didn’t see the damage that Katrina caused in person, but I can only imagine that this is 100 times worse. It brings a tear to my eye. But never fear, we’ll be back and stronger than ever.”
So far the Red Cross has collected almost one million dollars to help the residents of Palo Alto.
“(The Red Cross) has been able to raise enough money to bus in a number of day laborers to help get the people of Palo Alto back to where they were before the storm,” said Red Cross West Coast Director Allie Stint. “We will also be providing screens to shield the residents of Palo Alto so they don’t have to see the day laborers. Oh, and we’ve promised the Palo Alto residents that the second the work is done we will be responsible and remove all the day laborers from the area.”
Palo Alto has one of the highest number of millionaire residents in the country and a according to the 2010 U.S. Census, the average yearly household income is well over $150,000.
“We are rich. Stuff like (the mild wind) doesn’t happen to us. God will pay for this. Mark my words. No one can do this to the rich and get away with it,” said Palo Alto resident Rupert Harrington.