I've had my eye on hurricane Matthew for over a week, but it's only been in the last few days that we thought we'd be affected--and right now, we're still not sure exactly how. It may just be a tropical storm, which is not as scary. The idea of a category 4 storm being just off our coast is not one I like, but the hurricane force winds are only out 45 miles from the surface. One forecast called for the center to only get as close as 85 miles east of Ft. Lauderdale.
That's still awfully close, and so much could happen at the last minute. We will be glued to the 5 a.m. report--or at least, I will be. My spouse has the ability to sleep until a sensible time.
He's spent much of his free time during the past few days securing the property. You don't realize how much outdoor stuff you have until you start looking at it all as flying projectiles. Now, most of it is inside.
We're lucky in so many ways that our cottage is vacant. For one thing, we could store the outdoor stuff and the extra water there. For another, it's a less solid building: plaster lathe, not cinderblock, like the main house.
We haven't been under a hurricane watch or warning since 2005. When we first moved here, we had at least one watch or warning each year--and we moved here from the Charleston, SC area, so the drill wasn't unfamiliar to us. Indeed, by the disastrous hurricane season of 2005, we had become almost blasé.
I'm not sure I'll ever be blasé again. When hurricane Katrina passed over us, it was only a category 1 storm--but very wet, which resulted in lots of tree loss.
We think that hurricane Matthew will be a wind event. I think I prefer rain, even with the flooding which would be tougher damage to clean up afterwards. Wind terrifies me in different ways. I can't relax at all during a wind event. And wind tears up the power lines. Of course, trees falling out of saturated ground also does that.
Well, we've prepared as much as we can. If it looks like a category 4 or 5 is likely to come ashore in our county, we may make a run for it south to my brother-in-law's place in Homestead--yes Homestead, the city that was almost wiped out by hurricane Andrew.
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