Judging from the news coverage, you’d think that the apocalypse is about to descend upon the Atlantic coast. Yes, hurricane Irene might do damage, especially when it reaches New England where most Atlantic hurricanes come to die. But it’s ridiculous that my local CVS is completely sold out of D-cell batteries. Do people have no idea how long you have to keep a flashlight on before you run down the batteries, or do they just think the storm will bring 24-hour darkness?
That said, I am taking sensible precautions. I had the roofer out this morning to check the area where I had a leak last week. He added some silicone caulk/sealer to get me through the weekend, after which he’ll come back and determine if he has to do more. I have flashlights and batteries and candles and a butane lighter ready to go. Tomorrow, I will put my gas grill and patio chairs into the garage, turn over the patio table, pull down the storm windows in my screen doors, and buy some non-perishable food just in case. I don’t have a water pump, so I don’t need a supply of water to drink or to fill the toilet tank. My cell phone (the only phone I have) can be charged in my car. If necessary, I will awaken Monday morning to my electronic alarm clock’s battery-powered back-up, take a cold shower, and go to work without having styled my hair.
What I won’t do is stockpile a month’s worth of food, board up my windows, and re-write my will. The forecast for Sunday calls for sustained winds up to 60 mph with gusts up to 80 (though the storm has already been downgraded), so I will do my fair share of worrying about falling limbs from the several old trees in my back yard. But mostly, I’ll ride it out and not be the least bit surprised if nothing of consequence happens. My motto is, “Be prepared, but don’t act like a fool.”
In the event that something of consequence does happens, I have my insurance agent on speed dial.