while Rome burns
So I am having some trouble adjusting to this island. No one here has ever experienced a hurricane, or remembers a time when one threatened Chincoteague, so while I count my emergency candles and glue myself to the weather channel, they continue clamming and getting their Vietnamese coffee to go.
If this was Texas, there wouldn’t be a window left unboarded, and there wouldn’t be a can of food left on the supermarket shelves. People would be fighting over a single tank of gas, and there would be prayers for deliverance and insults to Irene spray-painted across billboards.
But it’s not Texas. People here seem to view this as just another whim of the ocean, and they have spent their lives in a sort of dance around its seasons and storms. So far, they haven’t been fazed by its latest mood swing.
And maybe I am becoming like them. While going through my perishables and stocking canned goods in case of evacuation, I found myself making a fudge brownie pie. To use up eggs and butter, I told myself.
Whether or not that was my true motivation, baking a pie while Irene barrels towards Chincoteague struck me as being vaguely Nero-ish. It certainly wasn’t very Texan of me, but if you’ve got to go out with the bay washing up your driveway, courtesy of 115 m.p.h winds, dark chocolate has to improve things.
Maybe I’m becoming an islander after all.
picture by James E. McConnell