Saturday, August 29, 2015

Storm Comin' (Maybe...maybe not)

In between the time I started working on this post (yesterday) and now, when I am finishing it, Tropical Storm Erika has gone from being a potential Category 1 Hurricane headed straight for us, to a much-weakened storm heading off to the west.

The governor had declared a State of Emergency (which I think in these days of unpredictable and catastrophic weather events is the right thing to do). We filled up the gas tank, got food and cash, and charged up all the battery-operated everythings.

62285_e8f6222962dd0e8a2bafa5638207b74e70f8d4a5_original_x_323.jpg (323×323)Flashlights-91.jpg (1388×1332)Battery-Powered-Plastic-Strapping-Tool.jpg (801×740)

(actually, I have no idea what that last thing is and we definitely don't have one ....)

fellsman2012-01-10.jpg (450×300)We had conversations about whether or not to put up the hurricane panels (over the doors and windows) and at what point we would make the decision to sit tight or head for the hills.

We are originally from New England and we got our share of hurricanes up there too, not to mention ice storms and Nor'easters. And, we are used to the media hype that comes ahead of time: "IT'S HEADING STRAIGHT FOR YOU! YOU'RE ALL GONNA DIE!" followed by "oops! our bad...AND NOW IN OTHER NEWS," when the storm turns out to be a dud.

It's not a secret that my husband does not like storms that involve high winds and heavy torrential downpours (well who does? but he REALLY doesn't like them). When he is worried, he often picks up his paintbrush, and last night while I was at a yoga class he painted this:

Calm Before the Storm
I like how he turns his worry into a work of art...

So we are not the type to be blase when we hear that a storm is coming. Compared to other people we probably over-prepare. We fall into the Better Safe than Sorry category, like this guy:

093-better-safe-than-sorry.jpg (522×522)

marsrover_mer_big.gif (2500×2000)The thing about storms is that they are beyond our control. No matter that there are satellites in the sky and little robotic space thingys wandering around Mars - we still can't control the weather down here on earth.

And you can't be sure about what is the right thing to do. Do we stay put? Do we leave? In fact, in situations like this, I always remember the story of this little house at the foot of a mountain in New Hampshire. An avalanche came down the mountain, heading straight for the house. The people in it ran outside to escape. But the avalanche split and went around the house. The people who had run outside were killed. I think it's true story, but if it's not - well, who cares; it illustrates the point. We can try to keep ourselves safe, but we never really know if we're making the right choice until ... well, until the avalanche either hits us or misses us.

a1f6453b55d3205b9e5cab93265c3c75.jpg (525×343)I'm not sure what this post is about really... It has something to do with weathering storms; with finding balance between obsessive worry and appropriate planning; with riding out the storms with as much grace as possible; with not forgetting to enjoy today's sunshine because we are worrying about tomorrow's rain. At least those are the things I was thinking about when I started it.

We can't escape storms - not the weather ones and not the ones in our lives. We can't have a plan for every possible scenario. Nor should we, because that would mean we are always living in the negative possibility, which of course means we are not enjoying the present moment, in which there is no storm; no avalanche. Still, we can't be foolishly la-de-da either. It's about balance. It doesn't hurt to think about what we might do in this or that situation; how we might handle it. So we are ready for Erika, whether she comes or not. But this afternoon, there is no storm. So we are are going to enjoy the sunshine, read books and watch the ducks and birds on the pond behind our house. They don't seem worried...

Adding a P.S. to this post:

Storm Erika fell apart and headed off in a way that we were barely affected at all. We got perhaps an hour of rain, and that was less than we'd gotten the day before from a random non-Erika-related thunderstorm. We listened to the forecast and ended up just bringing the furniture in off the lanai but didn't put up the panels (which I am glad of because it is a Big Chore and I would want to have put them up for nothing). Today dawned pleasant and now it's overcast but this storm has passed.


  1. Balance.
    Sounds so much easier than it is - but worth it. So very worth it.

    1. Yes - all those concepts sound easier than they are, don't you think? Like Balance and Letting Go and Staying Present....

  2. Weather is not what it used to be used to be a frightening foe, one of many, but not it is terrifymonster or can be. Love you hubby's painting!

    1. Hi Bookie! I know - it's either a bust or it's waaaay more devasting that anything we used to can just never know anymore what to expect. I'll pass your compliment on to hubby.


Talk to me!