I have lived through hurricanes and tornadoes and hurricanes are deadlier in the physical and psychological realm.
I will never forget my first experience was with Hurricane Andrew in 1992. The Media was announcing that a Hurricane was coming but since it was always crying wolf, nobody paid attention. I was at a friend’s wedding on the night before Hurricane Andrew was to strike Miami Florida.
My father had warned about the approaching hurricane but my response was that I heard on the Weather Radio that it was going northwards to the Bahamas. My Wife and I went to the reception but my wife did not feel well. We returned home but since my wife complained of a headache, I went to a Supermarket called Publix and was witness to people punching each other for the meager of articles. I managed to buy the last bottle of Tylenol and gave it to my wife.
We then stopped at a restaurant so that she could take the Tylenols for her headache. We were warned that Hurricane Andrew was fast approaching. Only when we saw Univision Television and NBC 6 News concerning Hurricane Andrew were we concerned. I spent the night removing all of my posessions from my apartment and leaving them in my In Law’s House. My wife managed to bring her Great Aunt and her Grandfather to spend the time.
I had my shortwave radio on to hear news about the hurricane and to hear overseas stations reporting about the same thing. We felt wind after wind and no electric power afterwards. We were without electricity for six weeks. Many trees destroyed the areas of Miami Florida. George Bush I started to pay attention since it was an election year. But his indifference contributed to Miami voting for Clinton.
I had received a letter from Radio Romania International expressing concern about the hurricane and about the well being of my family and myself. I will forever be grateful to Radio Romania International.
Fast forward to 2005 and the three Hurricanes called Katrina, Rita, and Wilma.
The same thing repeated itself except that Katrina destroyed the bridge of SR 836 over NW 97th Avenue. I heard this news on my radio since I had NBC 6 News on the radio. I also found out before the phone lines died that my aunt had died because of neglect by the municipal government in Miami Florida. She suffered from Lou Gehrig Disease and during Hurricane Threats, she would be evacuated to the nearest hospital. This time, the ambulance did not respond stating that the eye of the storm was in Vero Beach Florida.
After Katrina, there was no electricity, no food, no water, no gasoline, plenty of anarchy, and an indifferent George Bush II who was busy thinking about Iraq. Many people started to protest against the lack of help and justice. There were fights and traffic was difficult to manage secondary to the lack of electricity. The City of Miami Florida was able to reopen some of the gas stations but the lines were long and hours were rationed. There was one petrol station that had the Internet but limited it to 15 minute use. I remember hearing Radio Romania International, Radio Prague, Radio Polonia, and the BBC Asian Network [with Sonia Deol]. I left them messages of what was transpiring.
I would like to thank Michelle Daniel and the staff at BBC Radio Manchester [BBC GMR] as well as Alex Full at BBC Radio Cornwall for calling me at this time of anarchy. I would also like to thank Teresa Baugh, DDS in New Jersey, Radio Romania International, Radio Bulgaria, Radio Polonia, KBS World [South Korea], Radio Polonia, RDP International [Portugal] and Radio Prague for E Mailing Messages of Support.
The same thing repeated itself with Rita and its trip through Miami Florida leaving more psychological and physical damage.
Last but not least was Wilma. Two Days before Wilma was due to hit Miami Florida, my daughter celebrated her birthday. My Wife and I were not going to let some fear factor get in the way of celebrating our daughter’s birthday. We celebrated in a Shopping Mall at a Johnny Rockets Restaurant. I left my wife and daughter at a store for women and I went next door to a Record or CD Shop called Virgin Megastore.
At Virgin Megastore, I felt a strong headache with dizziness and headed to what I thought was another room. What transpired was that I crashed into the mirror and luckily the mirror did not break but I fell to the floor. The employees situated me in a chair and I gave them my wife’s mobile phone number. I went home but not without an evaluation which revealed that I had a high cholesterol of 400. [A Second Opinion done after Wilma and fasting revealed a High Cholesterol of 450].
I rested and then slept while the people were closing their windows and installing the protection. Since I was a wreck health wise, I had to sleep. I slept through Hurricane Wilma and was awaken by my wife when all was finished. Another phone call from the BBC which was very nice of them. This time, the terrace was damaged and trees were all over the place including the streets.
The people were better prepared since the experience with Rita, and Katrina.
While it must be understood that those who live in Florida and other coastal areas must be aware that they live in Hurricane Prone Areas, the US Elite must also take responsibility for their actions. I am glad that the Hurricane Katrina Victims are suing the US Elite for Psychological and Physical Damage. My Best Wishes to them.