As I reflect on the aftermath of Hurricane Irma as my neighborhood of Miami Lakes, FL and family home recovers, I think about how fortunate I have been given what Houston is still dealing with from Hurricane Harvey.
I also thought about what sustains us in these trying times when we are without our usual modern conveniences.
Before I lost power and air conditioning, I was charging up my devices and curating (yet again) a daytime and a nap/sleep-time playlists.
At the top of the daytime playlist called #HurricaneIrma, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter’s latest 4:44 and “Heart of the City” throwback single from The Blueprint album which just celebrated its 16th anniversary this September 11th (and no, I didn’t know that ahead of time).
I also revisited my high school memories attached to Alanis Morrissette debut album, Jagged Little Pill. There songs like “Hand In My Pocket,” “Mary Jane,” and “You Learn” had seemed more moody and self-depricating.
But in the South Florida humidity and shuttered darkness, they relieved an unflinching truth about growing up and becoming an adult, a reality I know too well now.
This music was my emotional air conditioning, keeping calm but alert as I waited for the Category 5 hurricane to pass.
It also drowned out the hollering winds that pulled trees from their roots and knocked them over houses like mine.
That’s the power of music and storytelling – being able to transport its listeners even beyond Mother Nature’s malicious peace disturbers.