There’s A Real Feeling Of Faith And Family In Saint Augustine As Final Hurricane Irma Preparations Wrap Up

There’s A Real Feeling Of Faith And Family In Saint Augustine As Final Hurricane Irma Preparations Wrap Up

We watched the sea levels rise to nearly the top of the retaining wall, and said a silent prayer for the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to be merciful to not only us but especially to our fellow Floridians on the West Coast where the brunt of Irma is scheduled to hit hardest.

After the initial surprise of the governor declaring a state of emergency 5 days ago, which understandably rattled not a few people, the folks here in America’s oldest city calmly got down to business and prepared for Hurricane Irma. For a town as large as Saint Augustine, noticeably absent was road rage, cutting in lines or any of the other unpleasantness usually associated with getting ready for a massive natural disaster.

My phone has been pinging non-stop with people offering to help, texts offering prayers for safety, people bringing me sandbags for my office and cases of water for my family. I don’t live in a zone that is being evacuated, but if I did I have friends offering to take me in. This is what I love most about St. Auggie, everyone feels like family here.

As my daughters and I rode around this afternoon, the people we came across were smiling and happy. We didn’t see anyone freaking out about Irma. Over at Vilano Beach, we were shocked to see people surfing in the rapidly-rising tide. But I’ll be honest, it looked like a lot of fun.

Downtown on the bay front by the Fort, a Jax news truck had shown up to to film the people milling around and watching the sea levels rise. Last year with Matthew, Avenida Menendez was flooded with nearly 5 feet of tidal water, causing over a million dollars worth of damage in one small area alone.

We watched the sea levels rise to nearly the top of the retaining wall, and said a silent prayer for the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to be merciful to not only us but especially to our fellow Floridians on the West Coast where the brunt of Irma is scheduled to hit hardest.

All in all, I love this town and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else, hurricanes or no hurricanes. Life moves a little slower down here, OK a lot slower, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Saint Augustine is a magical “living in a postcard” kind of place that creates nearly 3,000 new “locals” per year. Mostly from folks that came for vacation and decided to stay forever.

Hurricane Irma, no matter how great or slight the damage may be, will only serve to bring us closer as a community. Saint Auggie is a very diverse gathering of souls who somehow have figured out how to live in peace and harmony with each other the vast majority of the time.

How?

A lot of problems get solved when people spend time looking out for each other instead of only looking out for themselves. Remember small-town America from the 1950’s? That spirit is alive and well in Saint Augustine in 2017.

That’s my town, that’s home.

 

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There’s A Real Feeling Of Faith And Family In Saint Augustine As Final Hurricane Irma Preparations Wrap Up