When I was a kid and would misbehave in public, Pop would always promise me a whipping when I got home. No matter how hard I tried to “straighten up and fly right’, the dreaded whipping was never forgotten. I could beat the world record brushing my teeth and streaking down the hall attempting to reach my bed before I heard those dreaded words,” Son, come back here to my room”. Now a whipping from my Dad was not a swat or two on the fanny. It carried life reinforcing memories. He always told me that it hurt him more than it hurt me. I promised myself that if I ever had children of my own that I would never tell that lie. I stayed true to that promise although I told them that it broke my heart to have to administer corporal punishment.
The reason for that trip down memory lane is that I feel much the same way as I watch and wait to see what this monster Hurricane Irma is going to do. I have looked at all of the computer models, ensemble models, forecasts, and The Weather Channel until I am about cross-eyed. Right now, I do not believe that Riverview is at risk to any flooding. Our river is low, and we could easily absorb 10-12 inches of rain with no real problems. None of the models are calling for nearly that much rain here. We are expecting 1-3 inches.
The thing that has us the most concerned is the cone of uncertainty as to the wind speeds. A thirty mile wobble to the west could place us under 40-60 mph winds. That would cause a loss of power and many blown down trees to clean up. We have 70 acres of a non-GMO white corn that is an experimental project for us. This corn is at least 15 feet tall. That corn would most likely blow down. We also have a couple of hundred acres of soybeans which are loaded with a good crop. It has been so many years since we planted soybeans that I really do not know what to expect from them should we receive really strong winds. The overall impact on our hunting operations should be very minimal. We would probably just need to do a little road repairs, and move some fallen trees. Our neighbors who have thousands of acres of pecans would probably suffer the biggest economic losses. The pecan trees are heavy with nuts, and it doesn’t take much of a wind to blow a pecan tree down at this time of the year. This is also peanut harvest time down here, and heavy rains would really have a drastic impact on harvesting this crop.
I know that the folks in Houston are still reeling from the horrible impact from Harvey, and they continue to be in our prayers. As I stated in an earlier blog, cleaning up from the aftermath of a flood is actually the hardest part. Now, I am adding the entire state of Florida plus my home state and the Carolinas to my prayer list. My best advice for all is to pray and remember this, “When you get to the end of the rope, just tie a knot in it and hang on”! I also believe that it is better to wear out than to rust out. I believe these hurricanes are certainly going to wear us out before we have a chance to rust. OH and one more thing, we have taken in some of Martha’s family who evacuated Naples yesterday. Martha and I know how to survive for several days without power or water. I’m hoping that Marilyn and Clark know how to do so too.
May God be with everyone who is facing this monster hurricane. I’m praying that it will surprise us all, and turn farther out into the Atlantic. The fish do not care. They can just swim a little deeper while we are much more limited with our options!