The saga of Hurricane Ivan continues.

It is a bit nerve wracking. There is always that feeling in the pit of your stomach. I have experienced it for 4 days now.

We are under mandatory evacuation as scheduled for 8 am this morning. It is almost 10 am. I am still here and so are most of the locals. A brave lot! A foolish lot?

Ike is still a 4. A killer! It is heading for Cuba. Its impact on the Keys depends on whether it crosses Cuba on the north or south side. Either way, there will be winds and rain. However how strong depends on how close it comes to us.

We lucked out because of a pressure system from the north which pushed Ike further south. If that pressure weakens however, Ike will turn north. And then it could cross right over the Keys!

We will know better tomorrow morning. That is when most locals will make their decision as to whether to leave. Cory and Lisa will give me my marching orders in the morning. I am a follower, not leader, with regard to this storm.

I was out on the town last night.

The tourist end of Duval was dead dead!!! If I saw 3 people on the first 2 blocks of Duval, it was a lot. Sloppy Joe’s was next to empty.

On the other hand, the mid and far end of Duval were busy. Not overly busy, but busy enough.

All locals.

I had dinner at the bar at Antonia’s. A small but respectable crowd of locals. La Te Da was doing a good business. The WomanFest crowd was still in town.

Then I stopped at Don’s Place. He was doing a terrific business! All locals again. People were enjoying themselves. I had thoughts of this is the way it must have been in Hitler’s bunker in the last days of World War II. What a comparison! But that was my thought!

So we sit and wait. All day, today. Eyes glued to the TV for hourly Ike updates.

My house will be finished today as regards hurricane proofing. Still need some windows covered with plywood. Pool is full of deck furniture. Also 2 quarts of chlorine. The pool guy stopped by Smart move! My friends up north take note!

I shopped for hurricane foods yesterday. Things that do not have to be refrigerated or cooked. Like cans of pork and beans. And a can opener! The electric one will not work if the power fails. More water. Tuna and salmon in packets. Just rip open and eat. And so forth.

I already had my 8 am meeting at Lisa’s home with she and Cory. As I said before, no decision till tomorrow morning as to whether we leave.

Sunday professional football begins today. I am going to spend the afternoon at Don’s Place watching the games and eating the party food he provides. And sharing the good company of his many fine patrons!

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