Unless you’ve been camped out of range of all media for the last week, you’re all too aware that a hurricane is making it’s way past the left coast of Florida. And if you’ve read this blog for a while, you’ve noted my amusement at the phenomenon of rich senior citizens crawling around Naples in all matter of exotic four wheelers. Yes, it has to be seen to believed… An octogeneraian in a new Porsche Turbo trolling down Tamiami Trail at ten under the limit. And with one of the highest median incomes of any city in america and no shortage of seniors out to avenge their teen years driving a six cylinder Chevy or similar, just about every exotic car maker has a dealer around Naples.
So this morning I come across a news story about a Naples exotic car dealer jamming their whole inventory into the showroom in “preparation” for the hurricane. Yep, those big showroom windows should be good for a whole 70 MPH… Fortunately the forecast wind speeds have been revised to 60 or so. Not that it might matter, as 10 feet above see level is considered high ground in Naples, and 10 feet is a modest storm surge. Back in 1960 hurricane Donna sloshed seawater 30 miles inland to heights of up to 30 feet above sea level, but back then the whole county had a population of only a couple thousand people and probably zero Porsches and such.

I remember well the pictures from New Orleans after Katrina of mud encrusted new Fords and Chevies headed for the crusher. Plain and simple, totally disassembling, cleaning, and reassembling a $50k or less car to salvage it is a losing proposition, so the insurance companies just totalled them. And for more pricey machinery, a title branded “salvage” is the kiss of death.

That said, even a mere Boss 302 motor might be worth tearing down and rebuilding even after it’s been pickled in sea water & sewage. And a whole 911 Turbo, Lambo, or Ferrari? Ahh, the stuff of dreams, bought as salvage for a few thousand and loving rebuilt, minus a few hundred pounds of unneeded airbags, air conditioners, power assists, kilowatt sound systems, etc….

But fortunately looks like Florida’s left side will receive but enough wind to knock loose some aged coconuts and rain to keep the swamp fires down for awhile. And I’m proud to say that my fellow Florida Airheads are a wise bunch that settled inland from the ocean in more affordable and storm safe environs than the beachfronts. Besides, if you lived on the beach, you’d have one less excuse to go for a ride!

Best of luck to all the folks on the Gulf Coast next in hurricane Isaac’s path, and hopefully Isaac again produce less drama than forecast.