My Dad spends most of his time running a business down in Bluffton, SC, just outside of Hilton Head. My stepmom spends the week living and working in the Charlotte area. They go back and forth on weekends and holidays. They've done this for years and it works for them. Now with Hurricane Florence heading for the NC/SC coast, my family and I assumed that he'd pack it up and head to Charlotte. That is not happening apparently and my family is UP. IN. ARMS.
It seems like we've been talking about this hurricane for weeks now and the details change every day, every hour actually. Yesterday we were told Wilmington would take the first hit but this morning when I woke up, the prediction was for Florence to hit the coast, linger and then make a a hard left and turn south of Columbia. I didn't even know that could happen. I can't keep up. We spoke with WSOC meteorologist John Ahrens again this morning and even he said that we just don't know for sure what this hurricane will do. It's that unprecedented and unpredictable and this is coming from the experts. People hate hearing that: we just don't know. But we don't. We can't.
People like facts and direction in times of crisis. And because we have so much time to prepare for this type of natural disaster, it also means we have more time to freak out. Even with the threats of heavy wind and rain in Charlotte, Frank and I are being inundated with calls about our canned food stash, gassing up the cars and how much water we have on hand. My best friend told me to come stay with her in Atlanta (note: if things get bad I will be at the radio station and also Atlanta may get some of this as well). The thing is, I'm more anxious about my mom staying at my house for a week (she's coming in from Pembroke, NC) and how I'm going to get to work if trees go down and roads get flooded. I'm tightly wound about people coming to my house for a party but not about this. Maybe I get it from my Dad.
Look, I'm not saying you shouldn't prepare. But do what you need to do and then let it go. The details on this hurricane are constantly changing. We cannot control where exactly it will make landfall. Will it head South? We don't know. Will it stall out and drop all the rain on Charlotte? Don't know that either. Right now it's a waiting game. And we as a country just hate waiting, don't we? My dad believes that since he's in the Southernmost part of SC, basically in GA, that he'll be fine. His house is not on Bluffton's May River. He has food. I'm sure he has vodka. There are no pets to worry about.
But we're family and that's what we do- worry about each other. I know my dad, though. He'll do what he's going to do or he'll get sick of my stepmom (and Aunt and I'm sure by now even family from Ohio) yelling at him to come home and just head back to Charlotte.
Here's the latest on Hurricane Florence. This may have already changed since I typed these words.
Yesterday, the SC Governor lifted the evacuation order for Beaufort County, SC, where my dad lives. Like everything else that's happening with this hurricane, it could be reinstated today.