The first whisperings of a problem were around New Years, but here in South Florida we go through a twice yearly exercise. In May or so, we begin to get supplies. Hurricane season is coming, we need to keep at least two weeks of extra food in the house. The assumption is that in a Power Down situation, what can you have handy to eat without anything to cook it.
Industrial sized Peanut Butter Jars, Massive bags of Crackers, Giant multi-packs of Tuna. My own hallway has two cases of water bottles.
Mind you, here in Wilton Manors Florida, the Utilities Management staff is amazing. The head here is “Honor Bound” to make sure there will be no problems with turning the tap and having water pour out with the exclusion of when the storm is at its peak for about six hours. Its just prudent to have extra water on hand. Nobody wants to stand under the drainspout to get a drink.
We have never had a problem here due to his success and his department.
The drum beat of “there’s something wrong coming” got louder in January and February. Loud enough that by the first week of March, I managed to get to the Big Box Wholesale Club three times and stock the house for the rest of the year of those non-perishable. Someone else was welcome to stand in line, I’ll have Spam for lunch.
Preparing for a hurricane which we are used to here, and a pandemic are similar but not identical.
What happens for a hurricane is that in May, now, we have a giant tree on the property that needs to be “thinned” as well as all the hedges and flowers have to be “rightsized”. The hedges are fine, as are the flowers. After all, my prize bougainvillea hedges might be nasty to work with having all those thorns, but I’d prefer to do all of that myself.
The Tree is a very different story. It’s a Sea Grape. Being a native species, we are not allowed to remove it, but there is no reason to have a monster 50 foot tall beast in the corner of the yard with dinner plate sized leaves. Every year, we have it “lowered” or else it grows into the power lines. I have had the limbs trimmed back about six feet every year, and they grow back about half that so it’s now a healthy 30 plus.
We’re about to go through that exercise. They cut almost all of the foliage off the tree, and the fascinating thing is that the tree is evolved enough to accept that and thrive. It almost all grows back by “next” year. So shorten the longest limbs and allow it to adjust.
The problem is that half of my orchids were all shaded by that beast of a tree. I had some that the elements had eaten away the pots and needed replanting again. So pull all of them away from their home under the shed’s eaves and repot. I was able to make an extra two pots out of the one largest plant and move them close to the house and out of harm’s way.
I guess all of this is an illustration of the “Butterfly Effect” where the flapping of a butterfly in the tropics stirs up dust that forms clouds that eventually form a hurricane.
That dust on my Jeep’s hood in the carport is from the Sahara Desert. If I stand on the beach and look due east, my line of sight following the curve of the horizon skips over one small island in the Bahamas and then comes ashore in Boujador in Western Sahara.
You folks are welcome to the dust you lost, and here, have an orchid.