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BulletinNovDec2017

Editor’s Page Family Time with Irma David Lubin, MD dajalu@aol.com First of all, my thanks to Dr. Lynn Ringenberg, who served as Guest Edi-tor of the Sept/Oct Bulletin, which was dedicated to articles involving climate change and potential sequellae. And a special thank-you to all of the con-tributors of that issue. Each article was well written and presented an interest-ing and often thought provoking con-cept of climate change related to water safety, elevated temperatures, vector-borne diseases, and elevated sea levels. The cover was particu-larly alarming, depicting what downtown Tampa would look like with a five-foot rise in sea level. What was even more ironic was that Elke brought me the articles to review the weekend that Hurricane Irma decided to threaten the state with its devastating winds and potential flooding. As a whole, we in the Tampa Bay area were quite lucky that Irma decided to zig a little to the east just as she approached Tampa, and the zag a little to the west just as she passed to our north. Although many lost power for days and had to clean up debris (much of which is still curbside as of this writing), and many had to face the consequences of rising rivers past flood stage, overall, we came out relatively unscathed, especially if you consider what happened to the Caribbean islands and Puerto Rico with Irma and Maria. Had Irma been just a few miles to the west as she passed Tampa, downtown could have looked very much like the last Bulletin cover. We at the Lubin household fared well. When I bought this house seven years ago, I replaced windows with the double paned, but not storm proof windows. Electric bills went down, but the thought of hurricane damage was out of sight and out of mind…until early September. We only have a few windows, so we were going to brave it out without boarding them. Since then, though, I’ve gotten a couple estimates on shutters and the fabric panels, and plan to do something before the next hur-ricane season. We did do some planning ahead though, stocking up on non-perishables, water, batteries, etc. We also invited Elke’s mom and dog, my daughter Leah and her cat, and Elke’s daugh-ter Samantha (who wrote about safe water for the Bulletin), her boyfriend, and cat to join us at the Lubin household, along with our resident cat, Hobbes (figure 1). We made it through fine, watching updates on the weather, until they got extremely boring, putting together a 1000 piece puzzle, eating too much junk food (we discovered coconut filled Oreos!), and just keeping ourselves busy. We prepared what we call our Harry Potter room (figure 2), with lounge chair cush-ions in case we had a real disaster. It’s a storage room under the stairway where we keep suitcases and other odds and ends. I couldn’t imagine six adults and four pets cramming in, even with cushions. Just wasn’t going to work, and thankfully, we didn’t have to try it. Here’s a suggestion to local TV station general managers. We want to know where the storm is, how strong it is, and where it’s going. We don’t need all four meteorologists on the air at one time, with one of them telling us, “It’s really going to be howl-ing tonight, and scary, when it passes through.” I actually slept through the night, and have heard scarier thunderstorms. How about resuming normal broadcasting, during the storm, with half hour updates on the storm status? That could help us take our minds off what was going to be inevitable anyway. And af-terwards, you don’t have to stay on the air showing us reporters standing in empty streets. So we didn’t lose power at home and everyone went home on Monday. Our 15-foot tall cactus even survived (figure 3). Every-one checked in, after arriving home, and no one had significant damage or even power loss at their residences. Samantha, how-ever, had a neighbor who later in the day decided to remove a tree limb, which hit a wire, which killed power in her neigh-borhood, which upset the entire neighborhood, but was fixed quickly by TECO. PS - nor did I lose power or have any damage at my Swann Ave. Market & Deli, luckily preserving everything in the walk-in cooler. Other than Irma, I had another life changing event occur this summer, well, not exactly life changing, but I could finally scratch something off my short bucket list. I’ve been a baseball fan for at least 65 of my 70 years and always wanted to go to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. I was hoping to go with an old school friend of mine, but he couldn’t make it due to health reasons. Elke offered before to go with me, but know-ing she wasn’t a huge baseball fan, defined as sitting through a 3 ½ hour game on TV, I politely declined her offer. But then she (continued) 8 HCMA BULLETIN, Vol 63, No. 4 – November/December 2017


BulletinNovDec2017
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