After watching more and more dire warnings and studying the NOAA Hurricane Center website, I decide to take Hurricane Irene a little more seriously than I’d planned. Not that I’m boarding up windows and stockpiling water and plastic bags for “personal sanitation,” but I did drag out my non-cordless telephone, made sure all my electronic devices were fully charged, washed all my clothes and dishes, made sure flashlight + batteries and candles were on hand, made sure the sump pump in the basement was in easy reach and ready to go, put all potential missiles like garbage cans and patio furniture in the garage… But, it is still a big crapshoot as to what we’ll expect. Here’s the latest from NOAA on the advisories:

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR…
* SOUTH SANTEE RIVER SOUTH CAROLINA TO LITTLE RIVER INLET
* CHESAPEAKE BAY FROM DRUM POINT NORTHWARD AND THE TIDAL POTOMAC
* NORTH OF SAGAMORE BEACH TO MERRIMACK RIVER

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR…
* MERRIMACK RIVER TO EASTPORT MAINE

Note the use of the Merrimack River as a major dividing line. If I walk out my front door and turn right, I’m looking at the Merrimack River. And, I’m only a couple of miles from the Atlantic Ocean, too. So, my little house could see a tropical storm or it could see some rain. Another errand this morning was checking my condo, about three streets farther inland from the river as my house, for any issues it might experience. Right now, everything looks secure for both properties.

After one final task of turning off the condo AC after a surprisingly-timed showing this afternoon, I’ll be ready to just sit back and wait. When I was a kid, hurricanes were fun. The reason was that it was the only time television stations stayed on past the normal sign-off time and usually provided 24 hour service for emergency alerts. Since there was no network programming at that hour, the airwaves were filled with whatever material the station could access. Star Trek, Three Stooges, cartoons, B-movies… for a kid, this was nirvana. And, my parents had a gas stove, so popcorn was readily available. Being a kid, I had no concern for safety or home damage… all I knew was that I had arrived in the promised land and ate up every minute like candy. Now, of course, that glamor has worn off, with 24/7 programming being a matter of course and enough storm coverage that the mystery is gone, but… what I really wish is that I could pull an all-nighter Sunday night, when the worst is supposed to hit. Stay up watching the dreckiest TV I can find, shoveling hot popcorn into my face (with a few pieces granted to the dogs)… Unfortunately, Monday is teacher day and I have to go to work. If work is still there, that is… is it wrong to pray for destruction. One school and one unsellable condo… in the grand scheme of the universe, that’s a pittance…

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