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Coming to Tampa? Tips to keep Isaac from spoiling your convention experience

Dear delegates to the Republican National Convention and visitors:

Welcome to Florida and Isaac.

I've covered hurricanes for 30 years, from as far south as El Salvador to the tip of Long Island at Montauk Point.

So if you are from a landlocked state or one far from the hurricane zone, a few tips that you won't see on most lists:

*Pack some zip-lock bags. You will need them to protect so much -- from your phone to a pair of socks you put in your pocket or purse.

*Bring shoes that you can walk in water with.

Since you don't want boots, as those won't work well headed to the convention hall, try Crocs. Put your shoes in your hand, roll up your pants, slog thru the water and dry off. Crocs dry easily and are weightless -- you can stuff them in your bag/purse.

Trust me, you can't escape the puddles, and those odd-colored Crocs are just fun enough to make people smile in the misery.

Want to skip Crocs? Get some bread bags and rubber bands to cover your shoes. It's ugly but works.

*Get a tiny pin flashlight that goes on your key chain. You won't need it here with all the auxiliary power, but it's nice peace of mind.

*Grab a baseball cap to protect your hair from the rain.

*Umbellas are a pain. They blow inside out. You need a very light rain coat. (It's hot during a hurricane/tropical storm, and you don't want a coat that makes you perspire or worse: sweat!)

*Finally, don't focus on the category of the storm. I've seen tropical storms create more havoc than a category 2 storm.

Inside the forum, you won't even know there's a storm. And if you're a guest at the beach while your loved one is busy with politics, bring a book, and if the weather doesn't clear up by Wednesday, consider a drive inland. Orlando and the theme parks are only twohours or so away. Just check to see of the skies are sunny nearby.


Kerry Sanders is a Miami-based correspondent for NBC News