August 24, 1992 was a night I’ll never forget. I’ve been through some flat-out dangerous circumstances in my life, but that night was the only time when I thought I was going to die.
That was the night Hurricane Andrew came ashore in South Florida.
Now I’ve been watching the coverage of Hurricane Matthew and that same sense of dread is hitting me. Andrew was a beast, but Matthew looks to be every bit as bad with two important differences. For one, this storm covers a much greater area than Andrew did. For another, Matthew is moving slower and his track means a storm of much longer duration.
Andrew effectively wiped southern Dade county off the map. Matthew has the capacity to virtually wipe out the Atlantic seaboard from Palm Beach, FL to Myrtle Beach, SC.
I know some of you might think riding a storm out like this is a wonderful adventure. Others might be fearful of leaving behind a lifetime’s worth of treasures. Others just don’t want to deal with hanging out in a shelter for a few days.
But take it from someone who’s watched a house fall apart around his ears. Literally. You DO NOT want to mess around with a storm of this magnitude. Leave. Get out. Vamoose.
If you’re fortunate, your home and/or business will survive intact. But if it doesn’t, you don’t want to be in there. Trust me on that.
In the meantime, I’ll be asking the man upstairs to be looking out for all of you.