Monday, December 03, 2007

Where are my hatches, and how do I batten them?

We are having a storm, people. My little town of near-constantly temperate weather dares to have a full-on, news-worthy, brow-furrowing storm! I’m a little shocked, and totally without any method to prevent it, as is the unique thing about weather. (that unique thing being that weather, for the most part, makes all human beings it’s bitch. Go weather!)

Mostly what we’re talking about is a) rain and b) wind. But it’s the amounts and/or the velocity of these things that is taking the weather from storm to STORM!!! Things started early Sunday morning (so early that most of us would really have called it late Saturday night) and have been cooking ever since. Highlights, according to those who have the technology to track it, have included almost 2 inches of rain in about a day and supposedly winds over 50 mph over at the coast.

But that doesn’t impress me.

What impressed me was the tree that had ditched the traditional vertical stance of it’s tree brethren to give a try to the more edgy horizontal position about three blocks from my house. And this tree didn’t convince ALL of it’s parts to do this – the roots were holding true to the traditional “in the ground” position. This thing (a big thing!) snapped about a foot from the ground. Woof!! By the time I came home for lunch it was a tidy little pile of firewood, still reminiscing about it’s former tree life.

Also impressive was the freight-train-like sounds that the wind kept making all day yesterday. I couldn’t help but think of all of the Midwest people who compared the sound of a tornado to a train, and all the times I thought “well that’s just plain crazy talk from people who think it makes sense to keep building houses in areas that mother nature is obviously trying to clear for future open space!” But then there I was, washing dishes and hearing the train coming down the street, regardless of the track-free space there. And no matter of peering down the road helped me figure out what the heck the wind was doing that made that sound. (turned out to be the sound of my storm windows on my great, big front windows which, as it turns out, will shake and rattle when properly inspired.)

Impressed was I by the visual of my neighbors great, big recycling bin scooting down the street in front of the house (and happy was I that I don’t park on the street because my headlights would have been helpless to defend themselves from recycling bin attack!) Also impressed was I by sitting in the bathroom here at work and hearing, and FEELING, the breeze of the outside work on my less-than-all-dressed body. Here’s the thing you should know, if you want to share how impressed I was: there are no walls in the bathroom that lead to outsideness. All of the walls lead to other walled-in space. Halls and offices and kitchens and closets… All places where there should be no wind. And yet I was windblown!

But of all of our storm excitement the thing that was MOST impressive to me was that all afternoon my hummingbirds kept coming to the feeders. HUMMINGBIRDS! TO THE FEEDERS! Defying the tree-shredding, bathroom-rocking, bin-propelling winds to come and get a drinky-poo. Little critters who weigh probably about negative an ounce and who are not traditionally known as icons of super-strength, but they were undeterred by all this storm foolishness. They’re just SO cool! The next time I hear someone on the news vexed by how terrible the storms and how vicious the winds are I will think “hey, if Mr. and Mrs. Hummingbird can come out for a bite you can just shut it!”

No comments: