I was on Cape Cod, Massachusetts this past weekend when Hurricane Irene was expected to strike. Although it turned out to be “only” a tropical storm, and thus “only” sustained winds of less than 79 mph, I was a bit concerned.
Most of the year I live in Florida where we have a healthy respect for both hurricanes and tropical storms, and the havoc they can create.
When I’m here, on the Cape, I live in a heavily wooded area, and, although I would not be happy if a tree fell into my house and onto my couch, I would be even less happy if that tree fell on my couch when I was sitting on my couch. So, I called my town and learned that the American Red Cross would establish a shelter at our local high school. I now had a plan.
I went to the shelter. Although many of the volunteers at the shelter were from local towns, one was from Elkhart, Indiana. Even though she looked young to me, she had been a Red Cross volunteer for several years. She had been sent to Joplin, Missouri earlier this year after the tornadoes. And, no, she isn’t paid, except for airfare and hotel expenses, though, in disaster areas, there aren’t many hotels left.
I learned that Red Cross volunteer “deployments” are for three weeks. So, she now may well be in a Red Cross shelter in eastern Connecticut, or, eastern Massachusetts, or western New York.
Any of you that donate to the Red Cross, know that your donation isn’t recklessly spent. Any of you who don’t donate, consider donating.
All I know is that the Red Cross gave me a safe harbor. As it turns out, I didn’t need it, but they were there just in case.
(Sorry about the lack of a picture, but, my computer skills leave a lot to be desired.)