Friday, August 26, 2011

Some thought on hurricanes and veneers...

With profits like these maybe taxpayers should be helping out someone else, a very positive take on the fact that we are all going to die, and are hackerspaces and makerspaces the new salons and coffee houses of today?

Irene... you remember Irene right?

The advantage we have down here in the Caribbean (as opposed to New England) is that we know hurricanes are real and can seriously fuck up your day. For instance, the anchorage I'm anchored in has the Lion Fish infested sunken hulks of half a dozen boats that did not survive one hurricane or another... Just one reminder that hurricanes happen (the others are simply too numerous to list).

Being in the Caribbean, we also quickly become aware that when it comes to hurricanes and survival situations everyone is mostly on their own as the various folks who police the waters are the first to haul their boats or hightail it to someplace safe and those who will show up to help in the aftermath are greedheads not doing it out of the goodness of their heart but looking for a quick and big monetary score...

Not painting a very nice picture am I?

Of course, there are exceptions but they are few... When we were on the beach after Hurricane Omar the excellent volunteer rescue folks on French St Martin dragged "So It Goes" off the beach for free (as they did many, many others) while just a hundred miles away on another island that had been badly hit it was all about extortionate fees to pull people off.

Cruisers often do help other cruisers (some of the time) but it is often a surprise to folks cruising on boats that local liveaboards, who may have once been cruisers, are seldom helpful or even welcoming when a storm is coming down the tracks...

So, when all is said and done, you have to depend on yourself... Not the powers that be, not the local marina or marine business who look on you as simply a cash cow instead of a person, or even folks who seem to be just like you but are not.

Hurricanes and disasters are good teachers and a lot of it is that they bring out the best and the worst in people and cut through the micro thin social veneer that allows us say we are "civilized".

Friends of ours are currently in the path of Irene and our thoughts are with them. But like us, they will hope for the best and deal with the worst because it's all part of the gig.

Listening to John Stewart, who would have understood this post better than most.

So it goes...