Family Food

Florence fudge

Hurricane Florence is now behind us, and at least we can all agree on this: the fudge was pretty tasty.

Now, lest you think I took a piece of storm-powered debris to the noggin, I’ll make sense of the fudge later.

In South Carolina, the coastline was ordered to evacuate on Monday morning. Plenty of people feel that order was issued a bit premature. However, I will withhold my opinion on that and let the real experts debate it at the 21st Century Algonquin Round Table that is a newspaper Facebook page comment section. Also a great place to shape your opinion on matters as broad as politics and as specific as whether a particular intersection needs a traffic light.

We did not evacuate Monday, as (a) we were not ready and (b) the storm was still a really good ways off. We did not evacuate Tuesday as (b) we were still not ready and (b) the storm was still a really good ways off and (c) “Hey, that place across the street with the awesome Happy Hour is still open! Let’s make our plans there!”

So as we enjoyed a lovely charcuterie plate at Happy Hour, my wife and I strategized. She and our son would leave on Wednesday and head west to stay with family. I would stay back and prep the house and play it by ear.

On Wednesday, they were safe and sound a few hours away, and I had brought most of the the stuff inside that could become projectiles should a storm hit. Our dog took on the very important role of walking outside on occasion and barking at the sky, which he never does. I took this to mean that he felt a storm coming, or he was keeping aliens at bay.

On Thursday, I awoke bright and early to check the storm status. Initial reports had Florence hitting some time as early as Thursday. However, as the week progressed, Florence decided she apparently had some tasks to tend to or something and began taking her sweet time.

It soon became clear that the storm, if it did arrive, would not be here until probably late Friday night. And it was becoming more and more evident that it would hardly even graze where I lived. That said, I was becoming incredibly bored. The house was long-since cleaned. The laundry was long-since done. Netflix queue all caught up. I had googled everything I could possibly want to just to kill time. And that included “How to make fudge.” Why, you ask. Because I was sitting here and thought to myself, “I wonder how you make fudge…”

And then a short while later, I received word that our nearby grocery store would be open until 7 that night. Thus, hurricane fudge time.

I went to the store, and there were only a few people there, mostly buying a few basic essentials. I was hardly buying essentials.

That night, as I enjoyed my evening round of Jeopardy!, I successfully made fudge for the first time. And I was really surprised to learn that it costs about $5 and takes all of about 10 minutes. The next day, with my fudge solidly cooled and ready for sharing, I packed up the dog and the fudge and headed west. I was not so much fleeing a hurricane as I was fleeing the sheer boredom of the week, with maybe a smidge of desiring human interaction other than the grocery clerk and Alex Trebek.

Florence pretty much avoided where I live, although it did pack a nasty wallop north of here. There are a couple of more hurricanes brewing in the Atlantic as I write this, so who knows what will happen next. We’ll just keep an eye on the storm and make sure we are ready to act on a moment’s notice. Or, about 10 minutes notice, as I’ll need to make my hurricane fudge first.

Mike Gibbons was born and raised in Aiken, S.C. A graduate of the University of Alabama, he now lives in Mt. Pleasant. You can e-mail him at or follow him on Twitter @StandardMike or at


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