I live in North Florida and I’m a good 15 minutes from the beach so preparing for the hurricane is different from what you probably see on the news. The eye of Irma is expected to hit us Monday morning.
Hurricanes are a roller coaster of emotions as you have a week of build up and plot twists. My anxiety levels were high yesterday with all of the hurricane uncertainty and running a mile a minute trying to finish up work before the building closed for 4 days. I felt like I didn’t get a chance to breathe with work and then preparing for a possible direct hit from a possibly category 4 hurricane at home. My husband is complacent with hurricanes but humored me as I sent him checklists throughout the day. Then I did what all Floridians do to prepare for a hurricane – had drink with friends. I’m lucky though, we aren’t evacuating so I got to go home and sleep in my own bed. Maybe “lucky” is yet to be seen.
I woke up this morning and checked the storm path for updates. It had changed drastically over night and had moved west. Being in north Florida, that means there’s a lot of state below us. With a cat 5 hurricane coming towards Fl, the only way for it to stay that strong is to stay over water and ride the east coast. Basically, we want it to hit something before it hits us. Yes, I know this is awful thinking and it does come with guilt, but the hurricane needs land to weaken. When I went to bed yesterday it was predicted to be a cat 4; when I woke up this morning, the hurricane was projected to be a cat 1 or 2 when it hits us. That means really bad things for the rest of the state.
I have today off for hurricane prep. We aren’t in an evacuation zone (the city is broken down in to flood zones and several zones were evacuated) so we basically needed to buckle down for 4 days of house arrest. I spent a good deal of the day cleaning. I don’t know if one would expect people to do laundry and vacuum before a storm could destroy the roof, but we are more expecting to lose power than have damage. No power means you can’t run the washing machine so I did it all today. My husband and father in law took care of putting anything that could be flung at the house (yard furniture etc.) and put it in the garage. It being the last day without much rain, I took the kids to the playground to wear them out and give them their last taste of freedom. Prep done.
The weird excitement in the day came after the playground when my son wanted ice cream. I stopped at the grocery store to buy ice cream cones and noticed they had perishable goods marked down. I bought a half off loaf of bread and drove the mile home. Both my husband and mother in law were so excited about the discounts, they immediately drove to the store to buy more. Why not? We are going to need food while stuck in the house. When they came back, the same bread I bought 10 minutes before was now 75% off. That meant the store is dropping prices throughout the day. My moter in law made chicken and celery dumplings with the discounted items we had just purchased and the 6 of us had dinner for less than $2. After dinner, my husband and my father in law went back to the grocery store. This time the perishables were discounted so much, they literally just gave it to them. Seriously. They came home with free stuff. It was so hard to find bottled water but we now have a stockpile of watermelon.
Today was pretty easy but tomorrow the rain will start.