ORIGINALLY WRITTEN BY DON RATZLAFF
Every region of the country, it seems, is particularly vulnerable to one kind of natural calamity or another. With the arrival of Hurricane Wilma on the Florida coast Monday, the National Hurricane Center has come to the end of its list of names for storms in a single season-21 are chosen for each calendar year. The devastation caused by these storms, including the notorious Katrina, is almost impossible to calculate, much less grasp. Material damage can be measured in dollars, but few if any tools exist to gauge the emotional toll.
You can’t live anywhere in the world without the prospect of facing a natural calamity. As we know, the Gulf Coast is vulnerable to hurricanes, the West Coast to earthquakes and the Midwest is called “tornado alley.” We prefer fair weather, of course, but given a choice between those three threats, and the odds of emerging with life and property intact, we’ll cast our lot with Dorothy: “There’s no place like home.” -DR