A window into the life of a professional geek, wife and mother (and nonni), stitcher/designer, bibliophile, old-school gamer, and whatever other roles she finds herself in.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Here we go again...

Mention the word 'hurricane', and everyone around here goes nuts. Frances is still 5 days away from potentially impacting Florida, and people have been lined up hundreds deep to buy plywood since yesterday. Traffic advisories have been issued for jams near home improvement stores. Grocery stores and gas lines are surreal. (Granted, the gas lines may be due to today being the last day of a statewide gas tax relief...)

I can understand being prepared. But there's a difference between 'prepared' and the undercurrent of panic that seems to have overtaken the county. And it happens every storm, every storm season. Eyes are glued to the Weather Channel and hurricane websites. Storm-watching really should be declared the state sport, as popular as it seems to be.

I am, admittedly, among the ones keeping an eye on Frances - and she is big, and last forecast track I saw had her making landfall near here. Certainly cause to at least be prepared.

I found a fascinating website today that had risk assessments for our area: storm surge, flooding, wind, erosion. The only one that was of any concern for our address was wind, and a high wind risk is going to be the case anywhere near the coast - we're enough inland that there's very minimal storm surge risk, and we're not in a floodplain (although flood insurance is a sensible precaution anyway).

We decided years ago what we would do if a hurricane threatened a direct hit, depending on the intensity of the storm. We've ridden out a category 1. A 3 or higher would necessitate evacuation to northward relatives, carrying irreplaceable items such as critical paperwork, computer backups, and valuables with us, and securing the rest.

In thinking about what stays and what goes, I realized that most of the stuff we have is just....stuff. And stuff can be replaced - that's why we have insurance.

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