Thursday, August 25, 2011

Waiting for Irene

It's been quite a week for disasters around here. First the earthquake on Tuesday, and now the impending arrival of hurricane Irene, which is forecast at this point to be perhaps the most severe hurricane to hit this area in decades. I'm not sure I like the sound of that.

The weather forecasts are full of gloom and doom, and the chance for flooding, wind damage, downed trees and power outages is very real. When hurricanes do come out of the Caribbean or the Gulf of Mexico, I am used to other areas being in harms way. Florida, the Gulf Coast, the coastal Carolinas. But this one is tracking differently, and by Sunday morning I may have an experience rivaling childhood memories of hurricane Agnes in 1972.

I only have vague memories of Agnes, but our family was at my grandparents' summer place on the Sassafras River at the time (this is the same place so many of my family fishing posts are from). My memories are not much more than a series of images, but I remember images of trees bent nearly parallel to the ground, scary winds, water covering the yard, and at one point the body of a cow floating past the house, all four feet up in the air. I remember my parents' concern that the windows would be blown in, and the very disconcerting feeling that my parents were worried.

Hopefully, this will not turn out as bad as they are predicting, but that seems unlikely. In the meantime, we wait.

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