Sing along with me Clash fans…. If I go there will be trouble, An’ if I stay it will be double.
Such was the dilemma this week when Matthew came to town.
And that it how it started. Is the storm coming, is it not coming? Will it go to the Gulf of Mexico, or Florida, or Georgia, or South Carolina, or come straight here, or go out to sea, or all of the above and then loop back around and give everyone the finger from mother nature again? All of these options were on the table as the week began, and the changes that occurred were not only daily, but several times per day. I was expecting a snow storm to break out at some point.
Who do you listen to? Who do you watch? Who do you follow on the internet? Is it the Weather Channel, Weather Underground, Accuweather, Your local news, Hurricane City, The Farmer’s Almanac, the ants building huge ant hills for elevation, the birds taking flight for Oklahoma, or your Uncle Larry’s arthritic joints that tell you the big one is coming ?
I chose all of them and developed a grid that charted each and every moment from every source I could gather, taking plot points of latitude, longitude, tidal charts and lunar cycles, I even threw in the new zodiac sign of Ophiuchus (look it up) and built that in. When I was finished I not only knew where the hurricane was going, I could predict who would win the presidential election (don’t ask) and who would win the next 5 Super Bowls. (It’s not Cleveland) The only problem I had with my genius plotting was that the hurricane was going to hit somewhere between the Florida Keys and Nova Scotia. I took solace in knowing that at least I ruled out both the West Coast and Battle Creek, Michigan.
Next up was determining the strength of the storm. I was confident in my decision skills that we would stay with a light breeze and showers, and if it did become biblical feet of rain and 200 mph winds that we would get the fuck out. But where to go, where to go ?
I ruled out going east right away as that was the ocean and I did not feel that Portugal was practical. South was in the direction the storm was coming from, and Mama raised no dummy to head that way. So we could go West or North, but how far West and North? As we ended up seeing, the rain and wind extended in both of those directions as well, so unless I was going to Wyoming or Canada, nothing felt safe.
In the end, we stayed. If you leave, you cannot get back, and such is the state on the island now. We are in curfew, martial law, socialism, and I do believe that vinyl records have come back. Despite the conditions today, and they are dire for many, I still think I heard the ice cream truck making its rounds through the town..
As the winds howl outside tonight I am grateful I am with my family, and have a roof over my head. That cannot be said for many, and my heart goes out to those in Haiti. It also goes out to those on Hatteras Island currently without power and dealing with flooding. These events make you appreciate what you have, and if anything I wrote above made you laugh and forget about this storm for one minute, I will have done my job.
At the end of today, the sun dropped from the clouds. Tomorrow is another day and the sun will rise. We will dry out and recover, better than ever. I believe that more than any weather forecast, as the resiliency of those that call this island home is unlike anything I have ever seen.
Now, about that election…..