Hello friends! Welcome back to The Over 50 Corner!
This week it has become a difficult task to concentrate on a subject that isn’t about Harvey, Irma, José or María. Nice names, I thought, for hurricanes! (That was before they turned into destructive, life changing and deadly storms!)
My home town of Katy, just outside of Houston, is still wreaking of wet carpet, ruined furniture and drywall (that’s ironic…dry wall) that sits out on the curb of street after street. This is the result of 27 inches of rain that poured continuously over this area over a short period of time. It’s been over a month and there are still piles of damaged furnishings waiting to be picked up! Lines form for monetary assistance from the various entities that were awarded grants and families still living in temporary quarters without a place to call their own.
Then came Irma, tearing up the beautiful islands in the Caribbean and the Sunshine State from one end to the other! Winds and rain that left the islands in a state despair and darkness, only to take a direct hit from Maria within a week! At this writing, the islands are still waiting for effective assistance!
My island of Puerto Rico, as you all know, has been in the news since day 1. Irma grazed the island and Maria destroyed it! If there is any good news, the electrical grid is slowly being repaired but, over 50 percent of the island is still in the dark! Gasoline is now available at more locations making the wanting lines a lot shorter. The once flowering tropical trees and many palm trees are bare with just the trunks swaying in the warm Caribbean breeze. I see pictures of all of the small towns in the mountains that are still under water! Like the saying goes, “water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink!”
Roofs are gone! Houses are gone! Everything is gone…except the people!
Last week I went to Florida to visit family in Orlando, renting a car, then driving down to Miami, taking the Turnpike which is the non-scenic route.
Where Texas dealt with rain, Florida had to deal with the vicious winds of Irma! The streets are lined with dead palm branches and leaves from all the tropical vegetation that grows so beautifully there! Trees, believed to be, over 100 years old, toppled over like dominoes. They are still lying on the side of the road waiting for the chain saw crew to show up…and like Houston, waiting for the city to take it all away.
Mother Nature has been cruel this year. What has caused such fury? I don’t know.
What I do know is that all of us should learn from this.
Create a “survival” list in preparation for next year’s hurricane season (if not sooner). Start filling that list as soon as possible. Next shopping day, buy an extra can of tuna or whatever is on that list. A camping stove with liquid fuel may come in handy or a dry battery flashlight. Don’t wait until the “rush in on”! Have an evacuation plan set, if needed. In other words, plan ahead!
I sincerely hope that all of you are safe and in your homes today and never have to leave them due to a storm. Just take care and be safe out there, if you do.
…and then there’s Nate!
See you soon, on a happier note, at The Over 50 Corner!