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The Old Men of the Mountain braved the super storm, to travel to the Hilltown Café in Rensselaerville, and they too braved the elements to have the restaurant open. Actually, the weather was nothing the Hilltowns were not used to; we have seen worse and have had snow thrown in for effect. The weather guys had many scared out of their wits for our area. They did get it right for those just south of us and maybe a tad east by just about fifty miles. The OFs said they did not know how they could go through the same flooding as last August, with just a different name.

The OFs continued with the discussion of the storm that battered the east coast, especially the tall ship (HMS Bounty) that had the equipment malfunction and floundered in the storm. The OFs that were in the Navy said that for one thing the captain left port too late and with such a critical piece of equipment (generator) to only have one on board was quite an oversight. There should have been a backup. To which one OF said ah, hindsight, a great thing. An OF said there may have been two, we don’t know that, and they both were swamped.

Of course the OFs continued talking about the weather which was a major portion of what was happening, not only the day of but days before the storm arrived. One OF mentioned that he could understand some people not evacuating. Some are so attached to what possessions they have they want to stay and protect them from intruders who will take advantage of the evacuation. Some will stay just for the adventure of staying. Most of the OFs said they would get the h— out since it is only “stuff.” Then an OF said that is easy for us to say since most of us are ready for the shovel and a six-foot deep hole, but he could understand that younger people have quite a decision to make.

One OF mentioned that he would like to see how the government handles all the big money of the cities compared to the poor farmers in the valley after Irene came through this area. This OF bets they won’t get the hassles that the valley people got…and even after a year they are still getting hassled.

Another OF wondered why people build big cities right on the water with sections of these cities being below sea level? We have New Orleans, New York City, parts of New Jersey, and then when storms rush in they are not prepared, and people complain. The OFs can understand why the people affected carry on this way too. It is hard when you lose everything even if you are not prepared. One OF wondered if the word ‘New’ had anything to do with it.

“Many people build where they think it is safe from calamity,” an OF said, “and then along comes a sink hole, or an earthquake, or a meteorite falls from the sky, so where is safe?” the OF asked. There are so many people around the world that are in serious hurt right now…Haiti still, Japan, the tsunami, earthquakes and mudslides all over the place. Another OG said, “Look at the Middle East.” One OF said, “Wars happen and will always happen,” but even though he was in two of them he still can’t understand why.

This chatter was getting a little deep for the OFs so we started talking about different states that the OF winter in. Today it was Arizona. The OF headed to that state says he really likes it, although it is building up so fast that they are running out of water. This OF said that the mighty Colorado River is now so tapped into to supply water to the growing population of the areas around it that the water that was in the river now never reaches the ocean. The OF said this is a real problem.

This OF like his doctors in Arizona much better than here and he is not of the best of health, but of good spirits and knows from where he speaks. Do they know any more than the doctors in our area? He does not know, but they are much more relaxed, and he doesn’t feel like he is in some kind of factory, like cows going to the barn to be milked. Right now the weather in Tucson is 86 degrees, and sunny, and the same for Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, with night time temperatures in the mid 50s. No wonder this OF is leaving on the 4th to get there.

The Old Men of the Mountain that met at the Hilltown Café, in Rensselaerville are happy for the OF leaving but not many wanted to tag along and they were: Harold Guest, Frank Pauli, Miner Stevens, Roger Chapman, Robie Osterman, George Washburn, Bob Dietz, Mace Porter, Gary Porter, Jack Norray, Mike Willsey, Ted Willsey, Jim Rissacher, Harold Grippen, and me.