I might be an idiot.
This morning, I am writing from my back porch, watching Hurricane Matthew rip branches from trees and beat up my neighbor’s fence gate.
At this point, the only real tragedy here is a violently uprooted mushroom. I doubt that the damage will remain on that level.
For mostly irrational reasons, I decided to stay. My dog is big, old and doesn’t travel well without occasionally reproducing whatever she ate last. We also have a miserably stupid cat that enjoys a road trip even less. And she climbs around yowling like a drunk banshee in a moving vehicle.
However, I did insist on sending the family back to Georgia for a few days. I don’t believe in gambling with their lives.
So far, the storm is still a good ways off, but branches are falling and trees are dancing like those day glow colored wind puppets on used car lots. I expect to see the real thing here in a few hours.
Power is already out, but I have battery back-ups and a wifi hotspot that is still working. I am watching the news online and seeing how ugly it is south of me.
In my last article, a few days ago, I talked about planning and preparation. Apparently, a lot of people ignored that. (Kinda like some knuckleheads ignored warnings to evacuate.)
The news keeps showing gas lines and empty grocery stores. Most folks tend to wait until it’s too late. Gas lines were running twenty minutes and longer, until the stations ran out. Grocery stores were overrun. Traffic out of town moved at the the speed of a violently provoked sloth.
Personally, I have enough supplies to camp out here for months. We filled up the car and gas cans as soon as we saw it coming this way. I also have plenty of surprises waiting for anyone who decides looting in my neighborhood is a good way to enjoy a natural disaster.
At the bare minimum, we need to see those people held accountable and banned from social media for those tweets and posts. I have to wonder how many folks stayed behind, just because of those threats. If announcing plans to steal during a crisis don’t qualify as terroristic threats, the system has already failed. People will die because of fear that looters will clean out their homes.
I will attempt to update the blog as this storm plays out. For now, Palm Coast seems to be holding up ok.
My sincere hope is that people won’t quickly forget this and go back to lackadaisical mindsets. Basic planning and preparation does not require lots of money or time. Get your priorities straight and think about how to weather the next storm, before it hits.
And, by storms, I mean more than just bad weather. Regular readers know what I am talking about.
I have plenty of resources available through this site and others I follow. Check the last post for links to a few good ones. Complacency and ignorance are brutal. Sitting around and making no attempt to preserve your own life or your family against danger proves where your head and heart are.
Just ask that mushroom.
M. Erik Matlock is a self-professed recovering knucklehead with more than 500 articles and four books in print. He shares his hard-earned wisdom at ErikMatlock.com, ProSoundWeb.com and through his books, which are available at Amazon.