Devastation from Hurricane Irma at Orient Bay on the French administered size of the Caribbean island of Saint Martin. (AFP PHOTO/Lionel CHAMOISEAU)

Here in Southwestern Virginia, we face a cool and pleasant weekend with lows in the upper 40s and early 50s with highs in the 60s and no rain in the forecast for Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

Not so for my birth home in Florida, where massive Hurricane Irma zeroes in on the state.

Preparing for hurricanes became part of my childhood while living in Gibsonton, a just south of Tampa on the western shores of the state.  Floods hit our home in the early 1950s and rescuers had to rescue my mother and I after a storm surge washed us out.

I checked Thursday with one of my cousins who lives in Tampa.  He said he’s preparing and may “head north” if Irma hits head on.

Depending on the route the storm takes as it passes over Florida, we may see some high winds and rain here in Virginia around Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.

Or Irma could turn East, head out to sea, and the forecasts could change dramatically.

Our fate will be determined the wind patterns, high and low pressure areas and the whim of Mother Nature.  In Texas and Louisiana just a week ago, Mother Nature is an unpredictable bitch.

Little doubt exists among reasonable people that weather turns nasty more and more often in our part of the galaxy.  While one part of America starts working on cleanup and recovery from one historic storm (Hurricane Harvey) and another part (Florida) prepares for the worst from another (Hurricane Irma), two other such storms churn in the Gulf of Mexico and the Eastern Atlantic.

To add to the fury, a massive earthquake off the coast of Mexico has killed six people all ready and rattled Mexico City some 600 miles north of the epicenter.  Mexico President Enrique Nieto calls it the largest quake in more than a hundred years.

In the Caribbean Islands, the French-Dutch vacation resorts of St. Martin suffered heavy damage on 95 percent of the homes and resorts, report officials.

“It’s like someone with a lawn mower from te sky has gone over the island,” said Mariou Rohan, a European vacationing on the Dutch side of the Island.  in Barbuda, tourism business operator Craig Ryan, said “It’s such a level of destruction that you can’t even see structures standing.”

Yet, here in America, the discussion in posts on newspaper web sites blames much of the destruction not on Mother Natures but the dysfunctional government in Washington.

I am truly shaken by the human tragedy in these areas. I will be raising money, donating blankets and food, and embracing everyone in my prayers. Our government has never been so dysfunctional and these people are going to need our help,” posted one reader on The Washington Post.

Totally Trump’s fault,” posted another.

When I read about Haiti and the suffering..I can only think of Bill clinton and the abuse of his charity ..or lack of it!! so much money..where did it go? and we think of Hillary and all she can talk about is..What happened…..what happened to these poor people…with no one to fight for them,” said another.

And so… 

Police patrol the area as Hurricane Irma slams across islands in the northern Caribbean on Wednesday, in San Juan, Puerto Rico Sept. 6, 2017. (Reuters/Alvin Bee)