Oct 31, 2012

Sandy - Schmandy…

With the “super-storm” Hurricane Sandy wreaking devastation through the US northeast and into Eastern Canada, I say, “Come on down to the Yucatan -- weather’s great!”
I'm just being silly of course. I know I can't control or influence the weather, in spite of my irreverence.

This pic is of the tropical storms and hurricanes of 2005 -- weird patterns, eh?
Living our winters here on Caribbean coast, the hurricane issue is an annual concern. (Hurricane season is July to October). Before we committed to setting up our winter home here, I checked the hurricane history of this region. Over the last 50 years, there was a serious storm to cross this general area 10 times -- that makes an average of once every 5 years.
In 2005 there were 2 big ones to make landfall along our coast. Emily (July 18 Cat 4) went over Playa del Carmen just 15 km to our north. She stripped the grass roofs off several palapas and cracked a few walls in some older units here in Paamul.
Wilma (Oct 22 Cat 4) settled right over Cancun, busting up several of the cheaper hotels. Those hotels were either poorly built or under funded. Cancun is about 60 kms to the north of us.
2005 was a bad year for tropical storms, including both Katrina and Rita which devastated the US Gulf coast. My actuarial thinking says that with our two hurricanes in 2005, it gives us clear skies for the next 10 years, right? Well 7 years later, we are still just fine...

There is a great resilience in the people and their buildings in this area. Very few buildings are made of lumber. Our palapa has a grass roof, but it is over a concrete building blocks casita. Besides, grass roofs typically have to be replaced every 8 to 10 years.
I think if/when a super-storm hits us we will have some rebuilding but it should be quite simple.
Meanwhile, good luck to all our friends and neighbors to the north.
I think I’ll go for another swim today. Seas are calm...82 degrees...wonderful.

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