Hurricane Harbor

A writer and a tropical muse. A funky Lubavitcher who enjoys watching the weather, hurricanes, listening to music while enjoying life with a sense of humor and trying to make sense of it all!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

And the rains came down and down...

And the rains came down and down and down... across South Florida.. across New England and many places in between.

In Miami yesterday it rained. In Miami yesterday.. it poured.

We had hail at the library the size of pebbles...
bam, bam, bam on the pavement...
somewhere between the size of nickles and pennies.
Little icy crytal pennies from heaven.

It was mesmerizing. The closest we get to snow in South Florida that you can get. I caught some in my hand and popped a few into my mouth, ice from heaven in Miami in May.

I ran through the library as inconspicously as I could... though most of the staff giggled knowing I was watching the first real heavy rains of May. They are used to it. I grabbed Margaret and made her come watch the hail storm. Joined a few women out by the back door who were watching the hailstorm and watching the water begin to bubble out of the street drains like new fancy fountains ... and then the street began to flood.

Flooded all the way across the yard, the sidewalk and up to the first step of the library.

Then the phone calls began...

First my son telling me that the house was leaking like a sieve and he had put buckets under the living room leak, Miriam's bedroom's leak, the kitchen leak that was raining in around the light fixture. Hey..3 bedrooms didn't leak. Nope, roof still not fixed while the landlord's insurance company argues with someone else and it is scheduled to begin soon.

Then my brother called. His roofers finally arrived and began taking the roof off... 2 hours before the rains came down. He had more water pouring through his ceiling than our house.

Then someone else got a call from home at the library...their roof was leaking too.

This would have been the big news of the day at that point... until we started smelling smoke at the library.

Well..not smoke but definitely something was burning. I had to run all over the library trying to find someone "official" to come smell the burning something so we could evacuate the library. The official people were on the phone trying to figure out what to do to get the electric back on completely and to get in touch with the cable company to let them know our computers were down. They followed me into the main part of the library, sniffed around a bit and officially called the fire department and tried to evacuate the library. May I say "try" because a few very persistent, old men really wanted to find the books in the stacks they were looking for and ..................we were evacuating people out INTO the rainstorm.

The water rose out the back door covering the first step completely as the staff hovered around the back porch watching the rain come down and the water rise up.

I told Illiana .. "okay, maybe sometimes God doesn't give much warning before a flood." She's an old Miami girl..Cuban, we have fond memories of May rains every day at 3:30 while growing up just as were let out of school to walk home in the ramin. May in Miami...ah the memories of childhood.

Anyway, the fire department came and went. They looked very officially, sniffing around and deciding whatever burned up in the AC unit must have been done burning. Illiana's son came... she was excited, was fun... he's a fireman. We let people back in, the rains still came down and we worked at half power with no internet, no computers and only partial lights.

Mind hit me as I sat there...the rains were coming down in New Hampshire and Maine a whole lot worse than they were in Miami. And, the water was rising there a whole lot higher and the good news was... when the rains slowed down the drains began to work again. Can't say the same for New England.

You just can't get away from weather and that is that. The truth. The bottom line.

There is nowhere to run or hide from a natural disaster of some kind shaking your calm little life.

Jim Williams from went to a workshop at the Florida Governor's Conference on Hurricane Mythology that was given by Dr. Christopher Landsea on this topic last week. The bottom line was .. forget the ice cube being dragged into the Tropical Atlantic and forget dropping nuclear bombs into a hurricane (bad idea) and get used to it. You can't hide from the rain and you can't get rid of hurricanes.

But, we can track them, study them and try to find out what makes them tick a whole lot better.

It's been a good week by me. I made a bunch of decisions. Decided to flip houses for now, trade the one I am in for another one my wonderful, funny landlord owns and try that one for a while. Why not? Easy enough, putting it all in the hands of my 17 year old son who has compiled his friends together to do the move. okay, Uncle Ronnie might rent a truck from UHAUL. However we do it.. we are doing it.

It's very exciting. Very nice little house (not so little) with a real Old Florida feel to it. I like it. The kids like it. Will see how it is to live in it and time to be out of this house and let some other really, big family move into it. I went over there on Shabbos with a prayer book an said Shabbos prayers there, had a snack... had good energy, felt right.

I was on Miami Beach today. So nice to be there. Spent part of my youth there...grew up in ways there... always a great breeze there on the corner of Washington and Lincoln. Watched a lot of summer thunderstorms there.

So, time to finish my week at work. Pack up what isn't already packed up and look foward to next week when the Hurricane Center reaches a milestone of 50 years. Planning on going to a series of seminars next week to commemorate the past and talk about the 2006 Hurricane Season. Promised a friend there I would go and I will. A good friend. I'm lucky to have such good friends.

Amazing...just fifty years ago they began doing their work, their research...we've come so far and yet.. on a rainy day in May, sometimes all we can do it watch the rain come down.. and wonder what the 2006 Hurricane Season will hold for us.

So... okay, okay seems I will stay in Hurricane Country as Jim calls it a little bit longer.


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