There is nothing nice we can say about this girl, Irma, the hurricane. She created havoc across the Caribbean, hammered Cuba, left at least 48 dead, and then decided to visit my home state of Florida, making her presence felt. The front pages could not resist her.
While I was not physically in Florida to feel the impact of Hurricane Irma, the most treacherous Atlantic hurricane ever recorded, I was there in mind and spirit. My children and grandchildren all live in Tampa, Florida, which as of Saturday, was supposed to be at the center of the storm. Thank God, that did not come to pass, and I happily report that my family are well and probably sleeping soundly for the first night in several days.
My children prepared “panic rooms” in which to escape (under the stairs) in case the worst happened, they got those inflatable beds ready, filled the bathtub with water, and put valuables in the dishwasher, the rituals that people who grow up in Florida know well. Then they waited and waited for Irma to come.
“It was uneventful,” my oldest son, Mario, texted me, to my big relief in Paris, where I was waking up Monday morning after a night of touch and go sleep.
Irma is still not totally gone as of this writing, but it has been downgraded to a Category 1 Hurricane, and we hope that she says goodbye never to return! Yes, I know, there is little Jose forming somewhere in the Atlantic, but let’s not worry about that today.
Irma became the lead story of newspapers across the land, and the globe. I was traveling in Spain before flying to Paris this weekend and El Pais carried the Irma story on its front page as well.
These are newspapers outside of Florida that led with Irma on Page One.
This two-day event, organized jointly by WAN-IFRA and the News Media Alliance (NMA), will provide a unique opportunity for North American news media executives to hear and discuss digital revenue strategyfrom the world’s most advanced media companies.
I will be one of the speakers for this conference in New York City.