Captured Moments – Snow In Florida

A tropical storm is off our coast this week, but this time, instead of running to the market for hurricane supplies, we are off to the beach to capture the beauty of nature. The photo below isn’t the one I planned, but it was the surprise I got when a wave crashed a bit too close, sending a cascade of sea spray just inches from the camera lens. Continue reading

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Feeling Thankful

One week ago today, I lamented about the possibility of a very destructive hurricane, and today I am simply thankful that Dorian chose a different path.

On Friday, I enjoyed the first semblance of normalcy I have felt in the past week, as I played Mahjongg with some friends. It felt odd, ‘out of sorts’, as Malcolm said to me this morning, to be re-entering our lives. We endured a small inconvenience, a disruption of little consequence but it still feels odd to be returning to normal, every day life.

Maybe the expectation of a negative outcome had prepared our minds for that scenario to play out and when it did not happen, we were both relieved and somewhat forlorn. I know that sounds strange, but let me try to explain.

Days of intense preparation followed by a roller coaster ride of uncertainty, followed by nothingness; no sense of urgency, no challenge or discomfort, nothing but, ‘well, that was strange.’ Dodging a bullet is exactly the right analogy to put this feeling into perspective. The impending doom, the relief when it misses, the wave of both gratitude and guilt and finally a return to normal.

My community, our state, and the entire country was prepared and in a much better position to respond to and overcome devastation than those who are now suffering in the Bahamas. Intellectually, I  know it was not a them or us situation, and it was not some bizarre cosmic message, but it sure feels like that.

So, what’s the lesson? Is there one, or, is it just a paradox, as Cathy from Smart Living 365.com explains in Torn Between Two Worlds. Cathy states that ‘while we may not be in control, we all have choices.’ Our choice, in this case, is how will we respond.

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Caption: GREAT ABACO, BAHAMAS – SEPTEMBER 5: Debris is seen after Hurricane Dorian passed through in The Mudd area of Marsh Harbour on September 5, 2019 in Great Abaco Island, Bahamas. Hurricane Dorian hit the island chain as a category 5 storm battering them for two days before moving north. (Photo by Jose Jimenez/Getty Images) ORG XMIT: 775399550 ORIG FILE ID: 1166092948 (Photo: Jose Jimenez, Getty Images)

The entire article by Trevor Hughes with USA Today may be viewed here.

 

Feeling……………

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Dorian

The post I had planned for today was to be a recap of August, which included our road trip to visit Cumberland Island, Ga, and my bout with dehydration and heat exhaustion. Unfortunately, that plan was rudely interrupted by an unwelcome visitor named Dorian. As I write this, a crew of workers is finishing up with the hurricane shutters which Malcolm began installing yesterday. malcolm

We are breathing a little easier today, since the track seems to have shifted from a direct hit to an off-shore event, but that does not mean we will not feel hurricane force winds or have wide spread power outages in our town. That is a much better outcome than the one we anticipated two days ago. We are still hopeful that it will pull even further away in the next twenty-four hours and become a non-event for Florida.

The graph below shows the projected track on August 29. If you follow the red line, it literally comes over our beautiful barrier island and through my front door, ten miles away. The last time a storm like this hit our coast was in 2004, when both Jeanne and Frances made landfall within one mile of each other, only two weeks apart. Both of those storms caused damage to homes, massive erosion to our beaches and extended power outages across our county. Neither of those storms was as strong as this one.

Dorian

The track we woke up to this morning looks a lot more encouraging. Folks further up the coast may not be as fortunate and after a week of anticipation and frustration, we know exactly how they feel.

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A mandatory evacuation is scheduled for our barrier island beginning Sunday morning at 10:00 and the bridges will be locked down shortly after. We took one final trip over this afternoon to capture a few images of my happy place before it changes once again. After about twenty minutes, we were ushered away by Sheriff’s Deputy’s who informed us that the beach was officially closed at 5:00.

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We have been to this rodeo a few times, most recently in 2017 when we were expecting Irma. I wrote about our preparations and the downside of living in Florida here. If there is a good thing about a hurricane, it is that we have days to prepare. Keeping a cool head, a sense of humor, a kind heart and packing a lot of patience along for the ride makes a difference when faced with this kind of stress. We are as ready as we can be. And, we have lots of wine!!!

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

 

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My Experience With Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is a condition that I have suffered at least once nearly every summer since entering my late 50’s. At this stage of life, eating well and drinking the daily requirement of water is simply not enough to avoid the effects of extreme heat and over exposure to sun. It also requires diligence and awareness regarding changes that occur with age, and understanding what your body will tolerate.  Each of us is different, and my tolerance of heat will not be the same as yours. Continue reading

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Cumberland Island National Park

Visiting Cumberland Island National Park

Visiting this eighteen mile long, three mile wide barrier island off the coast of Georgia is something you MUST plan in advance. The only way to access the island is by private boat or by  Ferry operated from St. Marys, GA. There are two departure times and two return times available. We took the earliest and latest since we had booked an all day tour with Lands and Legacies, a private provider, authorized by the National park system to operate tours on the island. It is not necessary to hire a guided tour to enjoy the beauty of this island, but we recommend it to first time visitors. Continue reading

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