Hurricane Isaac has been sweeping through the South. I called my mom to make sure that they were still OK. My whole family live right on the Alabamagulf coast. Their house is right on the Bon Secour river which is about five miles from the Gulf of Mexicobeach. I knew that they were not going anywhere. They were having a Hurricane Party. That’s where everyone in the neighborhood gets together pools their resources and “rides the storm out” in their home. No matter how bad or dangerous the storm may become, evacuation is not even a consideration. This is one of the reasons that I agreed to accompany my wife out to the Northwest. The last convincing storm was hurricane Fredrick back in the 90’s. My kids were kindergarten age and I was sure that we were all doomed. There were several tornado’s that nearly missed the house. I could hear the tell tale train whistle of the impending tornado catastrophe several times that night. By some miracle, the tornados went all around the house but never actually made contact. The water came out of the banks to completely surrounded the house. Towards morning, a large tree fell and dissected the house down to almost waist level. In preparation for the storm, I took the battery from the car to power a small radio to get news and weather tracking for the storm. I also had plenty of sandwich making stuff and canned goods, drinks and nonperishable food stuff for everyone, I had the chain saw in the house so that I may cut my way out once the sun came up. It was known to everyone that this far into the hurricane, the police, national guard, or any rescue agency for that matter, was unable to come and help even if they wanted. We were on our own. I had tied the boat to the largest tree near the house, as a last futile thought as a possible escape for me and my kids if things got really bad. Once the sun came up, I had discovered that the tree had crushed my boat to splinters. After this near death experience, I agreed to move to a place where I’d never be threatened by hurricanes and tornados again.
So when Isaac hit theGulfCoastI had to call mom to check on her (before the telephone system went down). I was on my lunch break at work and the news guy said that the eye of the storm had just past the coastline. Mom answered promptly and I could hear the howling winds in the background. Mom gleefully said, “hey, we’re just fine. We still have power, the water is barely out of the river banks, and the winds are barely sustained sixty miles per hour… so don’t you worry a bit about us. This is going to be a nothing kind of hurricane. We’re doing just fine.” I was relieved and after a brief chat, hung up and went back to work.
It was good to hear moms voice and that she was so up beat in the wake of the storm was a great relief. The sad thing was in my brief conversation and hearing the wail of the wind and thunder in the background, I had become a little homesick. As crazy as it sounds, and now that my kids are grown and living their own lives, I could easily risk my own life and go back and live in that chaotic mess.
On the other hand, I would seriously consider going toKenyaand setting up my own medical clinic to care for those in need.
In the sense of risking life and limb… Hmmm, what’s the difference?