The sun is shining. There’s a small breeze. It would just be another day in Florida if Hurrican Irma weren’t making her way north.
My zone in St. Pete issued a mandatory evacuation that started this morning. I had already bought foodstuffs, and I packed up what I needed to take with me last night. A friend is letting me crash at her place in Seminole Heights, FL, so I headed north early this morning so as to avoid being stuck in standstill traffic later.
Since then, I got my cats unpacked. They are in the guest room avoiding the three cats that actually live here. Rusty and Bubo seem content, though Bubo is starting to get curious about what’s on the other side of the door.
I moved some of my friend’s plants in from the porch, because they could be projectiles later. I’ll be doing some other preventative tasks later today and tomorrow: putting water in growlers, moving electronics up in case of potential flooding, etc…
Even with being evacuated, I’m not too worried. I’ve been through a handful, or more, of hurricanes from my Okinawa days. I’m prepared. I have a flashlight and matches and candles. I have food and water. I took the high ground.
Mostly I’m ready to ride it out. I’ve got books, my journal, my yoga mat, school work, and some yoga homework to keep me busy. I might even do some drawing, since I left all of the rest of my arts and crafts at the apartment…
I hope that everyone in the path of the storm stays as safe as possible. Prepare, take the storm seriously, but don’t freak out. That only leads to you making bad decisions.
I sent an online message to my students that included, “If you feel scared or stressed, try taking 10 deep breaths (even 5!). It won’t make the storm go away, but it is a way to take care of yourself and will allow you to make better decisions.” I plan on following this, and I hope you’ll join me. Stressful times are when we need meditation and self-care more than any other. Take care of yourself during this storm.