NASA reports:  "Hurricane Irene is a large and dangerous storm. In this image, taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite on August 25, bands of thunderstorms spiral tightly around a dense center, forming the circular shape of a well-developed hurricane. At the time the image was taken, 11:50 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Irene was moving over the Bahamas with sustained winds of 185 kilometers per hour (115 miles per hour)."

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NASA reports:  "Hurricane Irene is a large and dangerous storm. In this image, taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite on August 25, bands of thunderstorms spiral tightly around a dense center, forming the circular shape of a well-developed hurricane. At the time the image was taken, 11:50 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Irene was moving over the Bahamas with sustained winds of 185 kilometers per hour (115 miles per hour)."

 

Hurricane Irene reached Florida blowing winds in at 115 mph.  Have you ever felt wind at 115mph? 

 

In a way, I came close at 110mph.  No brag—just fact.  In my young and dumb years, commuting from college to home on the occasional weekend, I traveled the badland highways of New Mexico on a Moto Guzzi motorcycle.  The ’71 Guzzi I rode was a big Italian touring bike designed to ride smooth and fast (The Moto Guzzi was later modified and introduced to a number of police departments throughout the U.S.).

 

On the occasions I pushed my bike to 110mph, I can recall how I had to lay-flat against the gas tank so as to minimize wind resistance. So I’m peeking over the handlebars, hanging-on-for-dear-life.  Peripheral vision is no longer important because what is left and right of you flying down the road is a blur anyway.  You can only (better only) see the road front and center rapidly disappearing beneath you. 

 

The yellow spaced highway dividing line appears like a rapidly streaming ribbon.  Grains of sand, gravel, grasshoppers, bugs, bees, and dragonflies pockmark my helmet and face-shield.  Rat!-a-Tat!-Tat!  Bug guts leave mustard colored splats and streaks also onto my, shoulders, gloved-knuckles and forearms. Insect legs, wings and antenna are pieces of the road kill that decorate my headlight and me—with the occasional shredded remains of day-old dead snakes, birds, rabbits, prairie dogs await you.  And veering left and right, weaving past others doing the speed limit seemed almost cartoonish.

 

Yeah, I kinda know what a force of nature like Irene would feel like if she passed over me at 115mph.

A 1971 Moto Guzzi Ambassador looks like...

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