Weighty Matters

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After Hurricane Irma

Hi Everyone,

Again, I apologize for letting this blog lapse the last few months. 

Now, here I am, days after Hurricane Irma gave a direct bitch slap to the Florida Keys and went up the state. The aftermath is ugly, my friends. Pure and simple. 

Fortunately, my house did not flood. My roof only lost a few shingles and isn’t leaking. I have minimal inside damage from some wind driven rain at a single window. My cars, which both had to be left behind, are also okay. 

Outside, my fence is destroyed, I’ll need a new shed, and my boat lift is beyond repair. (How happy am I that I didn’t replace my boat last year?)

The oddest thing is that someone’s sailboat snapped its line in the harbor and eventually was tossed up onto my seawall. Thank God, it did not hit my house!

As far as Dolphin Research Center, I can’t describe the extreme joy we felt when the brace stay-behind crew reconnected with us via satellite phone after the storm and told us that they and all of the dolphins and sea lions were fine!

Our facility sustained some damage that we will rebuild. 

Conditions in our city are rough. Essential services are being restored but, as of this writing, power/water/sewer are still inconsistent and the water that is flowing is not potable. 

While I am filled with gratitude that I have a home to return to, I am heartsick for many of my DRC family and other friends in town. Many of them experienced extreme flooding in the houses they own or, mostly, rent. They lost most of their possessions. It is hard enough to find affordable places to rent and, with so much destroyed, this will border on impossible. 

Factor in that our economy is dependent on tourism, and many will be in dire straits. The Florida Keys hopes to reopen for tourists by October 15th and, hopefully, tourists will return. DRC will be closed until then so we do not have that revenue.

We are a nonprofit organization and have already turned to our members and others to ask for donations to sustain us so that we can continue to provide the finest care for our animal family and restore our facility to be ready to reopen. 

I am blessed with so many friends outside the Keys who ask if and how they can help me. Truthfully, the best way that anyone can help me is to help my DRC home and family. If you can spare anything at all, please donate at http://www.dolphins.org/general_donation.

Thank you all for your caring and concern. 

Here’s a picture of that boat on my property. Mother Nature is a powerful force.