The calendar shows a rapidly approaching hurricane season. Growing up in Florida, mostly during a multidecade cycle of moderate storms, I used to view 'canes as a day or two of exciting, windy, wet weather. As a teen, I remember driving over to the beach (only a few miles from home) during Hurricane David and and standing on the seawall in a buffeting windstream of sand, salt, and spray.
I'm a little less cavalier these days as we enter a new multidecade cycle of stronger storms coupled with a generally warmer planet. The past two years served as a wake-up call for we Floridiots who like to boast, "Hurricanes? No big deal..." or " I love a good hurricane".
I also have other people who depend on me to make smart ...(not macho )decisions. (The first smart decision I made was not to live below sea level, behind manmade levees, surrounded on 3 sides by bodies of water)
Still, I do live close to the Gulf and within the 140 mph wind zone. There are safer places (Kansas for instance), but quality of life is important to me also. (Note to Pablo, that's not a Kansas dig, I just need an ocean nearby for my quality of life)
The picture above and immediately below are reposts, but some of you were not paying attention back then. The photo above (2004) was taken just before Tropical Storm Frances dropped 16 inches of rain.
The photo above is the first calm day after TS Frances. The pond has tripled in area, and knucklehead is now standing on the same dock in kneedeep water. The canoe was his way out to the dock.
(2004, post TS Frances)
Above is a trailer that serves as someone's seasonal (hunting) camp near a little town called Otter Creek. Otter Creek which is normally a 5 foot wide trickle, swelled to fill it's historical flood plain and surprised a few people as it became a rushing torrent.
This year, I am getting an earlier start on preparations. I have waited too long in the past.
Things to do:
1) Climb up in the attic and survey for hurricane clips on all rafters.
2) Climb up on my very long ladder and finish some trimming of overhanging branches.
3) Climb up on my very long ladder and replace that one shingle...also reseal around exhaust pipes.
4) Continue acquisition of food cache items (good idea anyway...read Wayne's March 24th post at Niches re: avian flu prep)
5) Polish off the drain swales from last season. These are just to direct water down slope from home to pond.
All that responsibility can't make up for this glaring fault in my character...true confession time...
I still love a good hurricane.