Hurricane Mania

1 Sep

Woo-hoo we have a guest blogger today! We have been trying to convince our friend,  Pam to try her hand at blogging ( she is an excellent writer) for years-Onisha

Hurricane Spaghetti Plot

A friend, and a new Florida resident, asked for “storm wisdom and suggestions”….so here goes, my tongue-in-cheek, short version of how to deal with Hurricane Mania in Florida.


Florida Homeowner 101 Tutorial –

9 Steps for a Safe Hurricane Experience

1. “PREP”  No matter what is happening around you, try to remain calm until 24 hours before landfall (and have a room reservation inland with a 24-hour free cancellation policy).  While remaining calm,  it’s ok to pull out the pre-packed Hurricane Prep Kit/Bin/paper sack from underneath the staircase before, or at the 72-Hour mark before landfall. This action is socially acceptable as a Florida resident. New to Florida?  You are allowed to use your “call a friend, option, search the Internet, wander around the plywood section at Lowe’s, or look helpless by the flashlights. You are even allowed to worry a little as long as it directs you into a smart action plan.

2. “KEEPING INFORMED”  It’s ok to watch local weather folks but remember to breathe deeply between reports/updates. Updates will continue to look differently as the event progresses-lots of times for the good-but you should kinda worry when your outside cat turns up missing (they sense these things) or the weather channel brings on the gray haired experts (who aren’t normally on camera) or they start broadcasting live feeds at the end of your driveway!

3. “FOOD”  Check the expiration dates on canned goods (last BIG Florida storm was 10 years ago). Respect Tropical Storms-they are not “an out of the woods” trump card. Power goes out with 45 mph winds too!  If you lose power have a pact with your family or friend that everyone crashes at the “house with power”; “Tag-you’re it” agreement. Not really a legal document but you may get a free meal out of it.

4. “SPIRITUAL SPIN”  You can remain in denial until the 24-Hr. mark.  Still time to pray the storm away at this point. Others may already be praying; it’s time for you to hop on and join them to make sure you are part of the action (this has worked MANY times in Florida).  When you finally see where landfall is going to happen, and its somewhere else, God will forgive you if you think/say “Thank God it went somewhere else!”.  Just don’t repeat that to your friend who just lost his roof in another state.

5. “PARTY TIME” It’s ok if you have a “cone party” but NOT a Hurricane Party!  Cone parties are for watching the shifting of the cone landfall probability maps on TV.  You can serve a spaghetti dinner, as they are now referring to the different tracking models as “spaghetti” maps. These predictions come everywhere from the National Weather Center, colleges (from Master Program students??!), Weather Underground (from Underground Atlanta? Or Natchez Under the Hill?), and from the freelance “weatherman” who is tracking the storm from his den while watching football and the Weather Channel updates.

Hurricane Parties are still NOT in vogue in Florida or smart!  Give the cops your next of kin’s phone #.

6. “OFFICIAL DISCLAIMER”  “Hope for the Best but Prepare for the Worst -just get ready!” Message from the Governor usually happens before or around the 72-Hour mark or whenever they can’t figure out where it’s going.

7. “COMMUNICATION”   No! You may not have phones, texting, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, etc available for crucial updates and calls for help. Figure it out. Your phone may not be able to get you help as you are under rubble or broke down on the road, unless you have great confidence that cell tower #20 is up and running or that your phone battery has juice!  Don’t take chances thinking technology (and the Weather Channel app) replaces early preparedness or common sense. Ever heard of batteries, weather radios, and flashlights?  Think ancient survival.  Call an old person if that’s a reach for you. Also, think,”I’m an idiot” for taking a video outside in 80 mph winds for a FB post.

8. “THE ESSENTIALS”  Filling the tub with water is not so you have water if your son’s wife goes into labor (hot water needed for that you know) or to be used for drinking water (is YOUR bathtub really THAT clean?).  Tub water does work for flushing the toilet-do I need to spell it out? Young person-YouTube may have a video for you on this simple procedure.

9. “WEAK MOMENTS”  Know that you may “chicken out” after holding out until the 24 hour mark….especially if Mother Nature decides to deliver a surprise or two-like making a right hand turn straight into the coast, or slowing down until it’s a monster storm large enough to cover Florida coast to coast on the radar!  It’s ok to panic, but only for a moment (you must NOT appear as an unprepared Florida resident a.k.a. stupid). Just pack the dog and cat and RUN if not too late.  Try not to ride out the storm in the road gridlock or at the 7-11 where the line to the bathroom is 28 and one wheelchair deep!  Also remember your fellow evacuees will not be in a pleasant mood, may be hungry or may be regretting their decision to place their lives in the path of a fickle storm-be prepared for glares, lane blocking, horn blowing and……

In conclusion, there’s not a perfect “10 steps for Hurricane Safety” in this post, just an apology from this humble writer that she couldn’t come up with 10, and a reminder that there is no “perfect, tidy” fool-proof plan. Just go back to Steps 4 and 6 and go by that-take it from this storm veteran and be Safe, Smart, and Senile-no not senile!   but you get the idea!

Just be prepared-visit with friends in the grocery store-have a plan and plywood-and know if you live in Florida long enough you will see some kind of storm in your lifetime.

Blessings and in Sincerity, Pam

3 Responses to “Hurricane Mania”

  1. Bill September 1, 2015 at 5:29 pm #

    Great blog Pam. Keep up the good work.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Delores September 1, 2015 at 6:51 pm #

      Pam… This is great…Please continue to write


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