The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Friday, September 08, 2017


When the eye of a category 4 hurricane is bearing down on your location, the waiting can only be tempered with preparation. You prepare by checking on friends and neighbors who might need help to prepare. You prepare by protecting every window in your house with metal panels, kevlar sheeting (my choice), or for newer homes, hurricane glass—touted to be able to stand up to 150 mph winds. You prepare by making lists, outfitting a safe room, checking batteries and flashlights for the inevitable days without power. You prepare by charging every mobile device you own, hoping that cellular reception remains intact (not likely). You hope that large royal palms (as big around and a 50 year old oak tree, don't fall on your house. You stock gallons of water. You watch local TV meteorologists every few hours (hoping that the storm track will veer away (it has not). You worry about friends who are alone, and others who foolishly decide not to heed evacuation orders near the coast.

Hurricane Irma is 30 hours out. People wonder why we stay, rather than fleeing north. For some, the instinct is to flee—and that's absolutely okay. Hurricanes are scary and if you're in the wrong location, they can be deadly. For others, the choice is to stay, protect what's yours, even if there's not really much you can do once it starts. There are things you can do once it's over, if you're there to do them.

Friends who lived through Hurricane Andrew (Irma is bigger and badder) tell me that the sound is like a freight train immediately outside your window. Your house shakes noticeably and you can hear objects hitting the walls and the windows (if they're protected). The roar lasts, and lasts, and lasts while you wait for it stop. An hour inside a Category 4 hurricane seems like a day; four hours, like a week.

I suppose this is the price we pay for living in a beautiful place with a wonderful climate. For the next week, that price will be quite high.

I'll be back online once power and connectivity resume. For everyone in Irma's path—be safe.