After Irma, life changed greatly – for the better – when we found a generator on day 5 of 6 without electricity. I began to re-enter the normal world. We could plug in fans, charge up phones and computers.
This is not my first hurricane. I moved to Florida in 1979 but never really felt the disaster of a direct hit until 2004 when the eye of Charley crossed my path. We were without power for a week, and it was August.
One thing you will realize when you are in the destruction zone is that for you, life stops, and survival begins. The rest of the world gets bored with hurricane photos and moves on to the next big story. You continue to search high and low for ice – the one thing you can’t stock up on, and the thing that everyone needs in this climate.
My Irma nightmare is over. I have air conditioning, I have a refrigerator that works, although it contains little food. No more searching for ice, and no more digging through coolers to find something to eat and drink. I can turn on a fan, and I sleep at night without soaking in my own sweat. My home is not damaged. I am more lucky than many.
It’s summer in Florida and not my favorite time of year. We go out on the boat about once a week, and it’s been high tide at the times we recently traveled the waterways. High tide means fewer beaches and exposed sand out in the river. The normal places to find big living conchs, like the horse conch, are under water at high tide and more difficult to see.
The shells in my photo above confuse me. Many shells look A LOT ALIKE… So sometimes I am guessing as to the exact name. The flat white shell with concentric rings is probably a Dosinia, but the Tiger lucinia is almost identical looking – except that my reference book says that the underside can be pink and yellow. The shell I found is white underneath – it’s the one with the crack in the shell.
The jingle shells are pretty easy to recognize. Their thin shells remind me of the mineral mica.
At high tide, island beaches become scarce and small, but there are still plenty of hermit crabs scurrying around in their beautiful crown shells, pear shells and shark’s eyes in the shallow water offshore.
My little video here is of a big Tulip shell inhabited by a hermit crab. I don’t know which type of tulip it is because the shell is black and covered with barnacles. This is only one of the many hermit crabs I found near the shore.
This is a screenshot of the temperature where I live at 7:14 in the evening… as you can see it FEELS LIKE 100! So at noon, you can just imagine the oppressive heat… it’s why we don’t go out on the boat all that much these days. The heat and humidity here in Florida is stupid. And there is little relief when evening arrives.
Being right on the water means a sea breeze can cool things off, and my favorite time to visit the beach is later in the day. I don’t live on the beach, but I live close enough to visit any time.
However, I do look forward to Fall, when it will be less crowded and less humid on and near the water.