As you can well imagine, we’ve been tracking the progress of Hurricane/TropicalStorm/HurricaneAgain(?) Elsa since the trajectory began indicating we might take a hit from this one. On the plus side, it’s not a storm as significant as many we’ve lived through, including Hurricane Irma (which is the one that brought an enormous tree down on our house.) At least, not so far. It started as a hurricane, got downgraded slightly to a tropical storm with 70mph winds, and has now crossed over Cuba to enter the Gulf of Mexico. This is the point at which storms often build up strength again, and it looks like that might happen at any time now.
The storm is currently predicted to come ashore in Florida at Tampa (that big yellow dot in the middle of the pink area). The two blue dots represent Orlando, where Mark works, and Sanford slightly north of it, where we live. As you can see this projected path means we could get significant wind and rain, though nothing is certain. And it also looks like it could pass directly over my son’s home in Gainesville. So this is why we’ve been doing a lot of prep work, clearing up things in the yard that can become flying (lethal) projectiles, etc.
I’ve lived through many, many hurricanes during my life, sitting hunkered down in the living room all night, listening to loud thuds on the roof as limbs and debris rained down upon us. I’m not unduly afraid (generally) but I never, ever scoff at possible consequences. Especially after Irma smashed our garage and car. I’ve always been of the mindset to prepare for the worst, and pray for the best. Once we’ve done all we can to be ready, it’s out of our hands.
Thankfully, we just had the last of the dying laurel oaks removed from our property, so 100′ tall trees falling on us are unlikely, especially during a less powerful storm like this one appears to be. But then again, we didn’t expect our neighbor’s huge oak to fall on us, either. (And when I say huge, I mean the trunk was about 6′ THICK, and the canopy engulfed our entire house, though the weight rested primarily on the garage, thankfully, or we wouldn’t still be here.)
The bottom line is, winds are expected to begin picking up today about 2:00pm, and the storm looks like it will come ashore at Tampa sometime Wednesday morning. Hopefully, it will still be a tropical storm and not a full hurricane, and the damage will be minimal to those in its direct path. But there is a high likelihood of power outages so if I disappear for a bit longer, that’s probably what’s going on.
I do have a Ten Things guest tomorrow, and I HOPE I’ll be able to access the internet so I can welcome her, but if not, I’ll join in the conversation as soon as possible.
Thanks, folks. Any and all prayers and/or positive thoughts will be greatly appreciated and welcome, and hopefully, Elsa will mind her manners and go on her merry way without wreaking too much havoc.
Stay safe, folks, wherever you are! See you on the other side!