Since they just decided to evacuate New Orleans in front of the approaching Category 4 Hurricane Gustav, here's another vignette from our trip to the Gulf Coast:
During our work trip we took one afternoon off to go to the beach in Biloxi, hoping that there might be a cool breeze off the Gulf. No such luck. The beach was deserted in the early afternoon (local Biloxians knew better) and hot as the Sahara. The sea water was literally the temperature of a warm bath and there were no waves or wind. After less than hour we were thoroughly boiled and retreated to our air-conditioned trailer. I remember thinking as I waded out into the soup kettle: warmer sea-surface temperatures lead to stronger hurricanes.
(Now I have no idea whether sea-shore temperatures actually really count for much of anything when it comes to hurricanes, but still, it was kind of scary to contemplate.)
(For more hurricane-blogging, check out Chris Mooney and Jeff Masters, and read this plea for not-forgetting from the good folks at Common Ground Relief.)