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Thursday, August 30, 2012

ISAAC spared Tallahassee

Isaac missed Tallahassee by miles - but we still got lots of rain.

It has been quite a while since a big hurricane hit Florida - and even much longer since Tallahassee got one head-on. 

Isaac has been giving us rain off and on for the last 3 days. One could look into the blue sky and see the clouds going from south to north - swirling counterclockwise around the storm. The blue sky would turn to overcast - then we would be pelted by heavy rain. There was not much wind with the rain - and I have not had to pick up and branches or leaves from our yard.

The center of Isaac passed onto land about 350 miles west of us. This prevented us from getting much of the wind - but we did pick up a few inches of rain. Even today - it was just sunny a few minutes ago - and now it is overcast and looking like rain. For the last 2 days - Lulu has taken her Vespa scooter to campus. Tuesday - although it poured several times - she got to campus and back dry. Yesterday - it started to rain when she was just 3 blocks from home. She had her rain coat on - and seems to enjoy getting home safely through the rain. 

When Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005 - the American Library Association had their convention in the Crescent City the very next summer. The people were grateful to ALA for not canceling. It was the first group that came back after the storm. We spent 6 days in a beautiful hotel downtown - but the rest of the city was still in shambles.

The federal government spent $12 billion on a pump and levees system that seemed to work perfectly this time. There was still some wind and rain damage - but the terrible flooding from the last time was prevented. 

Although Isaac was only a Category 1 storm - it did play a trick on the experts. The large cyclone was spinning at 80 MPH - but it was only passing slowly over the ground at about 4 MPH. Since the storm was about 300 miles wide - that meant it took 75 hours to pass completely over a spot. That is 3 days of wind and rain. 

Tallahassee has the pleasure of being 20 miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico. It is also about 100 feet above sea level. Any storm that comes our way - cools off a little bit from skimming over land. Although St Marks - a small fishing town on the coast gets a few feet of flood - Tallahassee is high and dry.

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