Monday: Wisdom, After the Storm

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What happens after a storm passes ? Well, that depends on the severity of the damage, that was wrought by said storm.

After Andrew, in 1992, it was very dark, for a VERY LONG TIME.

Where my family home sat, geographically, was on the Northern edge of massive total destruction of every structure that once was whole. My parents home was destroyed, along with everyone else’s in this general area.

When power goes down, having light, is scarce. Finding light is the key.

It has been said, by the tv people, that those who have more, more money, more ability, more access, THEY will get what they need much faster, and cheaper, than others, who Do Not Have …

I know, that every day for months, I drove into the destruction area. I needed a special I.D. to get in, and out, outside of hours, because the national guard and the armed forces were guarding the areas most destroyed.

I drove in, in the morning, and I took orders from all the neighbors, of what they seriously needed, that I could procure, farther afield and bring back.

That’s because Andrew was an East – West Storm.

IRMA was a North – South Storm.

With the East West trajectory storm, you could go North of destruction to get whatever you really needed and could bring it back where things were needed.

Irma was a South to North trajectory storm. The storm encompassed the entire state of Florida from one coast to the other. Really, there is nowhere to go, in any direction, to get anything you need, and bring back to where you need it.

Community spirit degrades when we go without. People panic when they go without basic comforts like Water, Light, Warmth, Safety, Food, etc …

The list goes on and on.

Looters are famous for tossing grenades into an already bad situation. They just steal, because they believe they have a One Up on the authorities, and the residents of any given area, they decide to steal from.

They have no scruples.

With the Power Grid down, things get bad. Thankfully, Winter is not an issue. But going without creature comforts, the longer the duration of going without, get worse and compound daily. The longer one is in the dark, trying to protect what is yours, can seriously make one crazy.

I remember sleeping in a car, at the end of a street, with a gun in the front seat, so that families could sleep at night, knowing that someone had their backs. Guns were necessary, because looters and assholes were a dime a dozen in bad situations.

People, across the board need to make a list of serious needs, and then groups need to be formed by those on the outside, who can procure needs, on a need to have basis.

Food, Water, Toilet Paper, Baby Food, Blankets, Batteries, FUEL, Generators …

A working toilet is a luxury when there is no electricity nor running water.

Let me tell you …

A disaster can either make you or it will break you.

People learn how to be inventive and smart. Pooling talents and money and things one has with your neighbors, breeds trust and honor. People working together to get LIGHT and FOOD and MONEY and FUEL, works better than everyone fending for themselves.

Going from creature comforts, lights, toilets, kitchens, food, ELECTRICITY … to total darkness, no light, no running water, no electricity, is a very hard lesson.

We are so comforted knowing that we take for granted all that we have, that when a storm comes through and takes all that away in a matter of hours, and the after effects can last days, weeks, months and years …

THAT is a CHALLENGE …

When entire areas go dark, when the sun goes down, you don’t necessarily see it, but when it gets DARK, it really gets DARK. There are no BUGS, No hum of electrical lines, Nothing, Nada, Silence.

When all you see at night are stars for months on end, because it took months on end, after Andrew to get power back.

Thankfully, people did what they were told, before the re entered damaged areas. They bought generators out of location and brought them with them. And many of us supplied fuel for months on end to run those generators.

Yes, Irma was destructive, But Andrew was terribly destructive on every building for miles and miles as far as you could see and then some.

As long as you have solid structures that may be dark, but you still have a roof over year head, you are farther along than you think.

It is when there is no house or roof, or walls to live within, then you got to think fast on your feet. Where are you going to go and who is going to help you ?

Flood waters will eventually recede.

Clearing trees and clearing downed power lines come FIRST.

Electrified Power Lines can kill. We know this. Avoid them …

Do no trust a power line is NOT electrified, just because it is on the ground.

It takes some serious mental gymnastics to power through continual days and weeks of darkness.

And having a storm that blanketed the state of Florida, makes it harder to procure whatever it is you need, because in any direction, those people too, need the same things you need. There might be locations nearby that can provide, finding those areas is a MUST, and SOONER than LATER.

In times like this, it is in the Giving that Matters so much to THOSE who have very little or nothing at all.

When you leave your home to evacuate, you return to maybe something. Anything.

For many, returning to something becomes a return to nothing.

So where do we start ???

We start by helping one another, NOT stealing from one another.

We practice being our brothers and sisters keepers.

Charity begins at HOME.

If you live in a place that you HAVE, now is the time to GIVE, to those who DON’T.

This is where the rubber meets the road.

Do what is right. If you can help, HELP.

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