I lived in Savannah, Georgia, the place Margaret Mitchell described as “that gently mannered city by the sea.”
My stay there lasted four years. The last two I spent in the middle of the historic district, a space of centuries-old churches and homes, all surrounded by private gardens enclosed with fanciful wrought-iron gates, flowering azaleas and sturdy, gnarled live oaks draped with Spanish moss.
All too infrequently I leave the modern world of work, mortgage and 401(k) and return to the garden. The last time was at the end of March, when my Mom and I decided to visit.
When I was in Savannah I attended Wesley Monumental Church. This beautiful church was built as a monument to John and Charles Wesley. Construction started after the Civil War and the sanctuary was finished in 1890.
It was a short trip – only 36 hours – and ended with an adventure. The car wouldn’t start. We got a jump from a gentleman who’d been a neighbor of mine 20 years ago. Once we got going, we took one last turn around the squares and then pointed the car toward Talmadge Bridge and the low county of South Carolina. As we reached the peak of the bridge we looked back for one last glimpse of Oglethorpe’s city on the riverbluff, of tall spires and steeples reaching heavenward through the green leaves, of live oaks in the town squares.
Glenn Reynolds makes a good point about the far-reaching disruption to the modern supply chain that a single disaster across the globe can have. From his article:
Japan’s earthquake was in some ways a triumph of preparedness: Thanks to strict building codes, not a single building in Tokyo collapsed. But the earthquake, and the tsunami it produced, have had impacts that go well beyond the immediate.
In particular, the damage is exposing the extent to which modern supply-chain management has produced a system that is so lean it lacks the reserve capacity needed to cope with disasters.
In manufacturing, plants have been idled around the world because Japanese factories — or often, a single Japanese factory — serve as the sole source for a vital component. With the factories sidelined by damage or power outages, the components are unavailable, and production has to stop.
… But the problem goes well beyond cars and subways. Lots of more important systems are similarly vulnerable. My wife takes a heart-rhythm drug called Tikosyn; if she misses a dose, she could die.