On a more somber note, the other thing that I remember as vividly as my meal was the devastation I saw in Myrtle Beach from Hurricane Hugo. Some of you may recall that Hugo slammed into Charleston, SC on September 21, 1989.
Hugo ranked as the eleventh most intense hurricane at time of landfall to strike the U.S. this century and is rated as the second costliest hurricane with over $7 billion in damages. Hugo's storm surge was the highest ever recorded on the East Coast. It was estimated at 20 feet just north of Charleston. Hugo's 150 mile wide swath destroyed about one billion board feet of timber and resulted in major damage hundreds of miles inland. The total number of deaths associated with Hurricane Hugo is 82. (Follow this link to NOAA.gov for more info on Hugo)
Ironically, I spoke with a weatherman on that trip and I asked him a bunch of questions about the hurricane. He handed me a satellite picture of Hugo just off the coast as a gift. It was a spectacular picture that showed a very clear "Eye of the Storm" and I carried it around in my briefcase for a while. In fact, I know I still have it filed around here somewhere. My picture, unlike the one above, was black and white. Hugo looked like a big soft blob of cotton with a hole in the middle. I remember thinking - How could something that looks so calm and peaceful from above be so devastating and destructive down below?
So let's advance forward about 18 years when a storm of a different kind will hit Myrtle Beach, South Carolina tonight. The Republican presidential debates will take place at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center. With the mudslinging already starting over Ron Paul's "alleged" racist news letters. I wonder if it will get dirty tonight... Ya Think?
Catch the Action tonight!