It’s late Saturday night and I’m feeling lots of solidarity & concern for friends & family in the far southwest. Just days ago we faced a severe thunderstorm that produced flooding and widespread power outages in just an hour of fierce wind, flooding rain, and explosive lightning.
That was then. Since Tuesday, there’s been horrible wildfires in Maui (& elsewhere), and now a hurricane is making its way up Baja California over the Mexico-U.S. Border, the first such in 84 years.
Hurricane Hilary was a Category 4 behemoth some hours ago. It has weakened, but is till expected to produce flood dangers over a wide interstate swath of the west.I called some folks out there Saturday night; nobody seemed to be feeling panic. But regular schedules could be subject to some surprises over the next couple of days. Check out these forecasters images:
Given the 84-year interval since the last big blow and show on their coast, some western folk might be out of practice. But here near the Atlantic coast, many of us watch the ocean’s swirls and moods all summer long, sometimes hour by hour. And personally if I lived in Vegas, I’d be pondering whether this could be an opportune time to spend a night or two in Albuquerque (770 miles east). But I’m a Nervous Nellie.
Maybe zooming in will make the hazards a bit more clear.
Of course, the arrow is speculative; around here ‘canes can make sharp unexpected turns, on some invisible atmospheric whim. We’ve been saved a few times that way in recent summers.
And just because we’re far away from Vegas and it’s dry tonight, don’t think we’re feeling smug and indifferent to your plight. Just two days ago our lights were out, and there are still trees on or very near houses, or cut up into heaps along the streets they were blocking yesterday.
From sea to shining (& churning) sea: Here’s the National Hurricane Center’s map of Atlantic “activity” as of Saturday: all those multi-color Exes and the red O are candidates in a surging oceanic “primary,” to see who will emerge as the next breakout candidate to make a run on the Caribbean islands or the U. S. Atlantic coast.
This is an “election” that recurs every year, maybe numerous times, and the blowing and thundering coming out of them this coming week could make much more difference to us than the bluster and blather from a biped debate that’s supposed to be happening in Milwaukee . . . .