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It’s too soon to tell much as far as potential impact on South Florida, or anywhere on the East Coast for that matter.  I think that it will be late Thursday before we have a reasonably clear picture.  One more immediate concern is the status of Haiti.  It is currently in the path, and heavy rains are projected.  The problem is that there are still more than a million people there living in tents or other temporary housing.  We will continue to monitor that particular situation in the meantime.  Our surgical teams, led by Calvin Babcock and Michele Ryder, are scheduled to return to Haiti on a surgical trip in about two weeks, scheduled long before this storm.  As far as formal preparations go here locally, we are only just beginning to heighten awareness of the storm’s path.  More to come.

We have a summer intern from the College of Charleston who is a follower of WTS and wanted the opportunity to write a guest blog.  So we let him take a stab at it.  Enjoy.

Doggler Radar

To anyone who is a music enthusiast, it is easy to understand how I am feeling at the moment. Have you ever listened to some of your favorite artist’s songs, only to be disappointed by a subpar guest appearance? On one hand this experience could glorify your preferred musician, and on the other you could despise the featured artist for the desecration of a beautiful song.  I sure do hope our blog entries flow together in harmony similar to Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, rather than Mick Jagger and David Bowie. (See YouTube link)

Has anyone ever wondered what would happen if we didn’t have the Doppler radar system? How would we possibly predict a storm coming without our beloved technology?! Now let’s go deeper, what we do with no T.V. or computer quickly see what the forecast for the day, week, or month? Before you start to panic, there is a method that has been used to predict these storms since, well, the beginning of time.

Growing up, Hurricanes signified many chaotic things, but there always seemed to be excitement among all the kids in school, especially for the possibility that we might have one or two days off of classes.   We all remember the 2005 hurricane season, as it was the most active Atlantic hurricane season recorded in history.  Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma all made landfall in Florida at one point during their paths of destruction.  All schools were closed for extended periods of time during these hurricanes, especially Wilma, where we had weeks of power outages from the torrential wind and rain. I remember being particularly bored at the house, while my parents were preparing thoroughly for each storm, after their past experiences.  During this down time, I was spending a lot of time with our dog, Star, a 4-year-old Belgian Sheppard.

As each storm approached, I would be outside with Star, just because I wanted to always have a mental image of what everything looked like before the storm hit.  At the age of 14, the chaotic natures of hurricanes was fascinating,  and I was up for any kind of adventure. As I would sit outside with Star waiting for each storm to come in, the dog’s demeanor would noticeably change. I am not talking about 10 minutes before the storm either, as the winds and rains approaching would frighten any dog; but days before the hurricane’s approach.  I think back in amazement, as on three different occasions she became anxious, attentive, and unwavering while she never left my side. It took me years to understand that Star was telling me that there was a large storm coming, and preparations needed to be made.

There is no explanation I have for the connection between the canine species and the weather. Maybe they can sense the barometric pressure dropping more quickly than other animals, maybe they can feel the vibrations of the storm, and maybe they can smell a storm from miles away.  All I know is those days before the hurricane there were no T.V. stations that gave me 100% assurance that there was a storm on its way, Star did.  After all, for all you dog owners and lovers, these animals that you cared and nurtured for so many years care about you too and serve as your guardians.  They will protect you if someone invades your house and if you are injured, so is it so hard to believe they would also protect you from an approaching storm? That is for you to decide, but when the time comes this hurricane season remember, nature knows nature best.  Trust your loyal companions.

Cyrus the Summer Intern

“Free, like a river raging
Strong as the wind I’m facing.
Chasing dreams and racing father time.”

Born Free, Kid Rock

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This entry was posted on Saturday, July 2nd, 2011 at 5:02 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.