hurricane isabel hit the area just a bit after i’d moved up here in ’03 (har har, sounds like an old-timer’s tale already, doesn’t it?), and i was amazed at the fuss people made over it. sure, it was fierce when out in the water, but by the time it hit it was a measly category 2¹. i mean, come on, a 2 is nothing…i had a t-shirt when i was a kiddo that said, “i survived hurricane allen,” so call me when a real storm shows up. there was heavy-duty freaking out beforehand, though, and the particular way baltimoreans feel the need to freak out involves depleting the stock of bottled water and toilet paper at every store in 4 counties. i had plenty of tp, and quite frankly, if the world is coming to an end, i’ll be toasting with something more potent than plastinated water. and then we just got a bit of rain at my house, no biggie at all. huge chunks of the area lost power, though, including Vivian’s house for 3 or 4 days (sample conversation: “do you think i have to throw out these shrimp that were in my freezer?” “yes, dear, chunk that stuff now.”). in the end, i think it was more a factor that this far north simply isn’t prepared for the insanity like the gulf coast is, because things don’t get hit as hard or as often here at all.
which brings us to the current example. other people get real hurricanes. there was a lot of concern about NOLA getting whaled again with gustav. florida’s evacuating people out of ike’s path right now. and up here? we end up with hanna. sure, there’s a flash flood watch going on, but the worst thing was some of the bark mulch from my new flowerbeds floating out into the sidewalk². “was” i say, since the heinous storm involved a steady gentle rain from a while before i woke up this am until late afternoon, and is thusly long over.
best of luck for those of you dealing with the real thing. all i had to do was check up on the tp & wine supplies.
¹oh, yes, it did plenty of damage, and i’m surely not without sympathy for the people that got whaled on by isabel. to those people, this WAS a devastating natural disaster. i was personally merely lucky to not be one of those people.
²ditto, i’m sure this was bad for some people, but not in the greater dc ‘burbs, fo-sho.