+ + + + + PSALM READING + + + + +

Friends,
I’d like to share a new practice with you which I’ve been enjoying for some months, regarding the psalms.  
   There are 150 of them, as you may already know; and there are roughly 30 days in a month.  150 divided by 30 is 5, so I today I’m reading  five psalms, sequentially incrementing them by 30, thusly:  today is the 21st, so I’m reading psalms 21, 51, 81, 111, and 141.  It makes for a lovely meditation — especially if you read between the lines!  (I use the BlueLetterBible, online, which features various translations, for comparison purposes, and minimal advertising. (Good research tools, too.)
   We are told:  Pray the Lord of the harvest that s/he send forth laborers into the harvest.  (see Matt 9:38 and Luk 10:2)
   I used to wonder why the Lord needed our prayers, but then came to see that we were invited to the harvest party.  We can RSVP simply by showing up, by reading and meditating.  And listening, which may be the highest form of prayer.

Photo: youtube (fair use)

> > >  HURRICANE CHECKLIST  < < <

Hurricane Grace is comin’! 
Stuff we’ve done to prepare:  (applies to Buffalo blizzards, too) —

Charged all devices:  computers, phones, Kindles, portable drill, mosquito racquets (matar mosquitos).

Topped up the rooftop water tank, tinaco, to the brim. (Just lift the cord inside the tank which tethers the float valve, lowering it when full.)  Also, wise to tie the lid of the tank with strong cord or woven cable, tethering it so it doesn’t sail off like a Frisbee.
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Fueled car, adding some fuel treatment (ethanol, not methanol) to mitigate moisture.


Shut off propane tank.
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Shut off outdoor circuit breakers to well pump and pool pump.

Cleared yard of chairs, and any possessions that might become airborne trash.

Put some sheltered louvered-windows open at 45º to allow for pressure differential, in the event of tornadoes.

Turned off solar panel system, covering some panels with precut plywood to shield them from flying trash, clamping edges tightly.

Added algicide and chloro tabs to swimming pool, drawing pool level down a bit (six inches) to prevent excessive dilution.  (Hey, it’s smart to put your raincoat on before getting drenched!) 


Removed art work and soft goods from our patio room, which has only screens and bars, protectores, as a fourth wall.

Added a few clamps to downspouts, cleaning out scuppers, and replacing rusted wire mesh to prevent clogging of drains.

Park your car in a parking ramp at a hotel, shopping center, or hospital — but not below ground!  (Thanks, Hammockman Paul!)
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If leaving car on street, fold back car mirrors on both sides, to reduce their risk to flying trash.

Put heavy barrier against upstairs backdoor to prevent it blowing open, as it faces direction of oncoming storm.

Shopped mostly for canned and dry goods — stuff that doesn’t require chilling. Grains, such as rolled oats, rice, beans keep well, but need to be stored well to prevent ants and rats from dining.  (Shout-out to Jim at BackyardNature.net)
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Store some firewood or charcoal in a dry space. If in the tropics, be sure it is wood which termites won’t eat, such as zapote, or other hardwood. (Jim)
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Buy fresh batteries of various sizes.
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Lay in extra bottled water — six 20-liter garrafones (five-gallon jugs).
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Eat your ice cream after the power goes out.  We waited for four hours; it was still hard, but just starting to soften.  (Don’t open the fridge unless absolutely necessary!) But we were ready for bed, so we had a double portion of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia, and retired for the evening.  Hurricane Grace took down some trees around town, and knocked our power out for 13 hours, here. (Friend Jeff lost power for 20 minutes.)
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If power goes out for long, call around to friends (assuming there is a cell signal) to learn who has electricity.  Then invite yourself over, bringing pot luck, and any melting fridge-stuff.  Maybe empty the fridge before departing, leaving fridge door open.  Bring a hammock, a change-of-clothes, sleeping bag, go-bag, book, deck-of-cards, umbrella, raincoat, money, passport, hand-crank radio, solar lantern, back-up disk, etc.   (Thanks again, Hammockman.)

¿¿ HURRICANE COMIN’ ??   : :  Weather Tools

Tuesday August 17, TS Grace, near bottom, over Haiti, days after their 7.2 earthqquake, of Saturday, August 14.  (On far right, TS Henri doing a U-turn near Bermuda, soon to head for Cape Cod.)

Merida appears to be in the crosshairs.  While Tropical Storm GRACE isn’t presently expected to become a hurricane until after leaving Merida, this stuff can change quickly.  (Two days ago it was tracking for New Orleans, passing between Cuba and Florida.)

Grace could be my very first tropical hurricane, aside from remnants of Hurricane Hazel which blew thru the Buffalo area when I was a boy, and then nearly drowned Toronto, washing out several neighborhoods, which are now parks.  (Hurricane-risk is maybe preferable to those nearly annual Buffalo blizzards — but blizzards don’t create parks.)  Tropical Storm Cristóbal, last year, dropped over 20 inches of rain (not snow) on Merida, lingering for a few days.  But there wasn’t much wind.  Nor anything to shovel!   [more text beneath graphics . . .]

 

LAST YEAR :  Cristóbal, June 2020,  youtube  (fair use). Predictions need updates, often !!!

¿ The WEATHER CHANNEL, or WEATHER UNDERGROUND ?  You pick:

MSNBC / screenshot from youtube. (fair use)

Perhaps you remember the big flap over an audition by a politician as a weather guy?  (The Don maybe got his opportunity to apply for the job from being tight with a very wealthy executive of TWC, a big supporter.)  Hurricane Dorian went up the east coast, but Donnie said it was going to Alabama, based on very outdated TWC info.  Here are excerpts from Associated Press:

“Trump has defended his Sept.1 tweet that said Hurricane Dorian would threaten Alabama. Last week Trump displayed an altered hurricane forecast map in the Oval Office that included a crudely drawn addition in black ink to include parts of Alabama in an attempt to make his point.” […]

“Trump cited older and less authoritative information, which was based on outdated computer models and older graphics on wind speed.” > >   So, are ya gonna pick a weather-feed based on science, or politics?

Wednesday 11:45 am. Weather Underground predicts only an inch of rain.  I think they got it about right, judging by the level in the pool, but the power went out on my rooftop weather tools, so I am unsure.

Cool tool, with lots of details  Windy.com    (Yucatan in blue.  Cuba in green.  TS Grace in purple)

 

8am Wednesday  NHC National Hurricane Center.

 

Wednesday 10:30 am  NOAA “Geo-color”

 

Wednesday 11:20am  NOAA  “GLM FED”  Lightning mapper shows storm covering peninsula.

 

3:40 pm Wednesday. Geostationary Lightning Mapper

 

According to WeatherUSA, the storm became a hurricane about 15 minutes ago, at 11:28 am Wednesday:  Hurricane Grace was intensifying on Wednesday morning. A reconnaissance plane found that an eye with a diameter of 18 miles (29 km) was forming at the center of Grace. The developing eye was surround by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms. Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the center of Hurricane Grace. Storms near the core of Grace were generating upper level divergence that was pumping mass away from the hurricane. The removal of mass was causing the surface pressure to decrease. Winds to hurricane force extended out 25 miles (40 km) on the eastern side of Grace. Winds to tropical storm force extended out 115 miles (185 km) from the center of circulation.

 

8:30 pm Wednesday

 

Above: “Night-time microphysics” roughly 8 am Thursday

 

9:15 am Thursday, a friend well east of Merida (Tepekan) reports a few gusts, light rain. Here in Merida, no rain, light breeze.  (Yucatan peninsula no longer discernible.)

Meanwhile, a bit to the north, TS Henri is doing a U-turn southwest of Bermuda, and charting a course for Cape Cod!  And according to CNN, Grace crossed the Bay of Campeche, striking Mexico’s Veracruz state as a category 3 hurricane.

Grace was graceful.  She took down trees around town, causing power outages, but I’ve heard of no human tragedies.  Our power went off at 1:45 pm, and was out for 13 hours.  We ate a double portion of B&J’s Cherry Garcia, to “rescue it” from turning to soup.  A few small limbs came down from the big zapote tree in the backyard.  Lots of soggy leaves, but no damage.  A few photos of the aftermath:

Power winked off briefly, resetting wifi device, before going out for 13 hours.

Power winked off briefly at 1:45pm Thursday, resetting wifi tool, then went out for 13 hours.

CLICK:

Yes, there’s no global warming!

 

 

BOOK  : :  SOUTH TO FREEDOM

Who knew that Mexico (“New Spain”) had made such a huge bet on freedom — namely, that anyone who set foot on Mexican soil was instantly a free person?   SOUTH TO FREEDOM  tells this untaught account well.

Major General Andrew Jackson had invaded and stolen Florida from Spain, to disrupt escaping slaves from that foreign destination, of hiding in the swamps there, among the Seminoles.  Mexico didn’t have the military resources to defend it’s northern border against such incursions, but they were certain that slavery was immoral.  So they declared that anyone setting foot on Mexican soil was instantly a free person.  This may seem to invite a repeat of Jackson’s theft.  But the Mexican’s were steadfast about their position, and fierce in handling any intruding slave-catchers.  Their dedication to liberty of individuals was a major issue at bringing about the American Civil War.   Good scholarship, from a capable researcher and storyteller.

What truly amazes me is that southern plantation owners were not ridiculed off the stage of public opinion for their claim that the US Constitution protected their “property rights”.  “My children are my property, and I have a right to sell them? — I bought their mommas at auction, and bred’em myself.  My property, to do with as I please!” 

This looks like an early example of Big Lie in action, and half a million Americans died for failure to refute this junk argument of property rights.  Sounds just like Stop the steal, no?  (Trump told us for over six months that if he should lose, it was rigged; but if he won, it was fair.)  Heads, I win, tails you lose.  And then came January 6.