I came through Hurricane Irma in a way that makes me feel as though I was very much protected. As I think about the decision I made to stay in my home being based on the spaghetti models that showed that the storm was going to track up the east, rather than the west coast, I realize that the decision could have been unwise. However, the storm entered the Naples area and tracked northward, fortunately losing impetus as it spun overland. When I went to bed, the wind was strong but not fierce. During the night, I awoke several times but never felt in imminent danger. When I arose at 5:00, I glanced at my digital clock, the first indicator that I had not lost power. The damage to my yard was limited to broken tree limbs, none of which had fallen on anything essential to my safety. I was alive, and I had been protected. The next day, I began removing some of the limbs but tired out quickly so stopped. In the evening, my doorbell rang, and I greeted a young 20-year-old who asked if he could clear my front yard for $20.00. I informed him that I wanted the entire yard cleared and offered him $60.00, which he agreed to. He, his younger brother and younger sister, began what was to become a three-hour plus task, working even past dusk. I watched as they laboriously cut and piled limbs and debris. When they finished, I handed them an envelope with “thank you” written on the front. I had added $40.00 more to the sum, thankful for the assistance I had received from these strangers.
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