Today marks 1 year since Hurricane Irma ravaged the island of St Maarten. It was a moment of my life I wish on no one, not even the worse of enemies. Thankfully I survived with minor injuries taking into account the destruction around me. The memories of that night and early morning are still vivid in my mind at times I wish it was just a dream. I have covered much of the details of those events in previous blogs, feel free to scroll through my timeline to get full details. I am bless to the many people that reach out to me on Steemit, many of the whales on the platform upvoted and supported me throughout that difficult period. Several Steemains followed up and contacted me beyond the platform, I felt quite bless to the outpouring of love. Many of these people I have never met but I consider them dear friends, some are no longer active on the platform but I am truly happy for the opportunity this blockchain provided, meeting some like minded and amazing people. Today I want to reflect and share of my thoughts and end by sharing some pictures of the event.
Irma was my third hurricane experienced and after previously experiencing one major hurricane called 'Ivan', you would think I would be be experience and prepared for it but it was on a whole new level. Losing the material things wasn't a big deal for me but the thought of starting over all over again was a headache. Moments of life and death, those things never cross your mind. Living in a fairly secured place built to take a beating was of some comfort to me but after 2 hours of nonstop brutality, I quickly realized this would not hold. One of the harsh lessons I have learnt in life, no matter how well you are prepared, it doesn't have to be natural disasters, much of life results and aftermath is really left up to the elements and at times the mercy of the unseen. Being the man in the home and rescuing the neighbors, I was left holding down the bathroom door, roof already blown off, building rocking from side to side, steel dancing in the wind,and add insult to it, no visibility, women and children screaming, as the man can't let the wind break the door. Interestingly, much of that describe the strength despite the odds men go through in difficult moments. I was shaken and scared but I had to hold my shit together, if I did not lives could have been lost. We were in a tight space, the bathroom to be specific, things could have just caved in, the wall could have collapse but I knew it was madness trying to move. Another lesson through that experience, sometimes you just have to hold your ground in life, things may appear green on the other side but you can't make quick decisions and run with it. This experience have been a learning curve, difficult at time but enjoyable. Here are some throwback from 1 year ago
Before Hurricane Irma hit
During the "Eye" of Hurricane Irma
The eye of the hurricane is a relatively calm period before the last part of the hurricane hit. It usually last 15 to 30 minutes and its usually the time period where you should assess your location and if possible move to safer grounds. Its also important to move quickly as things can pick up really quick and visibility can become pretty poor. The last part of the hurricane is usually the most deadly and brutal part of the hurricane.
Built to withstand Hurricane force wind, "yea right"
View down the road
The neighbor home, flatten, not a block stand, only the foundation
Your truly, gathering what's left and trying to figure out where to put things
Life post hurricane Irma has been difficult trying to figure things out but I remain optimistic. The crypto market has been a good distraction but that has come with its disappointments as well, seeing prices plummet and projects fold has hit the portfolio hard. Figuring out paying for medical school is another challenge and headache but I remain optimistic. The Caribbean is beautiful place to live, if you have the means of owning a yacht or sailboat its truly a paradise to discover. Of course the hurricane season is a challenge but much of the southern Caribbean is spared, places like Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, etc are spared, every island offers its own experience. You can get it all here, from your typical West Indies, European, East Indian and indigenous people, its a melting pot of culture. Lately the immigration situation has gotten tough and break down of situation in Venezuela has led to mass movement of people to the islands. Some days I wake up recharge, other days I could do with a boost. I am closely watching the developments of the immigration situation, my hope is for the free movements of people but I can see things getting ugly. One thing is certain, the hurricane season has a way of showing we all need each other, I guess mother nature knows what it is doing.
One of the positives throughout this year has been the positive tone towards cryptocurrency in the Caribbean. Quite a few young people know about it, I was surprise to learn about meet up but haven't really ventured into joining any of these groups. Several of the leaders are taking steps to embrace the technology, Bermuda and Antigua are leading the pack, and as usual if the USA should give the go ahead, I believe its one of the places that can see widespread adoption. Many of the islands are already trying to attract these investors and incorporate it within their economies as revenue drivers. I believe 'crypto'and the 'Caribbean' goes very well but in a system impregnated with so much risk, scams and scam artist guidance and protection are needed. I have had the opportunity to speak with some young people about the volatility attach with cryptocurrency and while I thought it could deter them, it seem to be very thing that catches their eyes. I also had some conversation with folks within the insurance and banking sector, the general tone seem to be 'we looking at it', whether they get involve in it is primarily heavily dependent on what USA says. Its one of the places where blockchain workshops can really go a long way in engaging the people of the region, probably its a worthwhile investment for one of these project. Lets see how things play out, lets see if the Caribbean adopts or reject, I am leaning to adoption.