Stay out of Mother Nature’s way

I cursed the snow. While I was working, it had snowed another inch to two inches of snow. I was a newspaper reporter for a small daily newspaper and had worked late on a Friday night putting the Saturday morning paper to bed. I would have normally been home hours ago, but since I was helping out with the layout, I was one of the last staff members to leave the building.  

I dusted off my car the best I could and got inside. When the car had warmed up enough, I started on my trek home. I had about a 30-minute drive. Since it was almost midnight and more snow was expected, I thankfully came across few other cars on the road.

I took my time, but it was still tough trekking. Where the snow had been plowed, ice had formed. I was close to getting off the highway, when I went around a curve and did a 180-degree spin, narrowly missing the guardrail. I was shaken up, but quickly righted my car and started back on my journey. I feared getting T-boned on the middle of the highway. I didn’t stop shaking until I pulled into my parent’s driveway. I sat in my car for 10 minutes before I got out, checked to make sure that nothing was damaged, and then went inside.

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Brr, bad weather

The old motto from the U.S. Post office used to read: “Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet, nor hail shall keep the postmen from their appointed rounds.” When I think of bad weather, my mind automatically thinks back to that storm thirty years ago. The craziest thing, though, I worry about snow and ice and even heat and dehydration, but high winds and flooding top my list.  

A few years after the storm I mentioned above, I got a close-up view of a small tornado. The tornado was relatively minor compared to Tornado Alley standards, a loosely defined location of the central United States and Canada where tornadoes are most frequent, but it was still dangerous enough. The tornado killed a family and turned a small housing development into twigs.

When I went to the site, I was shocked to see the entire side of a house ripped into two like it was something you would see every day. I regularly get to see the ferocious power of the wind right outside my back window. When high winds settle into our area, I watch as the trees on a neighboring property owned by my local municipality twist and sag in the window. Over the years, I’ve watched as any number of trees have been split into two, like I was ripping up a piece of cardboard.

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No fighting Mother Nature

As a kid, I used to pooh-pooh the weather. I fought with my mother when she told me that it had snowed and I wouldn’t be able to make it to my basketball practice. I couldn’t understand the precautions. I understand them now. In fact, I’ve changed course, just like my car on the ice oh so long ago. I’ve come to the conclusion, it’s best to give Mother Nature a wide berth.

And oh yea, if it snows or if the wind picks up, I’m staying inside. 

32 thoughts on “Stay out of Mother Nature’s way

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    1. There are some things like a good thunder-and-lightening storm, or strong winds, or rain and hail, that are much more enjoyable when watching from a warm, dry, safe room than when having to battle against them, no? 🙂

      And it’s funny, when I think of bad weather I think of weather that’s too hot, so hot that even lizards seek the shade … 😀

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, much safer when viewing from indoors. 😀
        I know what you mean about very hot weather. Last summer, we had extremely intense hot weather. We Brits didn’t cope well at all with it, lol. I like spring and autumn the best.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. So hot that lizards look for shade and birds use oven mitts to pull worms out of the ground? 🤣🥵

        I like the changing seasons, but did you notice that spring and fall seem to get shorter and shorter every year?

        Liked by 2 people

  1. Mother Nature can be frightening indeed and does not discriminate between who she hits. Best to stay under cover indeed!

    We had a wild windstorm around this time last year and it knocked over a decades old tree from our neighbours lawn. The kids had fun afterwards but it was definitely scary in the moment!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. In my opinion, not only should Mother Nature be respected, but it is also important to realize that she has a zany sense of humor. You know those days – when it’s bright and sunny and warm, then out of nowhere, a black cloud pushes in overhead and rain begins to pour. Or, when it snowed two days ago and no more snow is forecast for the foreseeable future, so you finally do a thorough job of shoveling more than just the needed parts, and then overnight, Mother Nature drops another 6 or so inches on your just shoveled parts! It’s a very dim memory now that, as kids, we’d beg to go play out in the rain, and were permitted if there was no thunder and/or lightning.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I always worry way more about everyone else out driving in bad weather if I have to be out- especially in ice. So many people don’t understand the concept of drive for the conditions. For them it’s simply drive in their normal crazy way.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My dad was such a ‘stormwatcher’. He loved keeping an eye on big storms…sometimes during wicked thunderstorms w/tornado warnings. Weather fascinated him…all sorts…but especially the Midwest ragers. I confess I’m the same. Like you, respectful of the power, Brian, but it’s all so intriguing to watch….but better to be indoors than on the road. I can see why your snowstorm driving experience stuck with you for many years. Wowza. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, nothing like knowing there’s a huge snowstorm coming and you don’t have to be anywhere. Great to sit yourself at the window and let the snow just rage. That’s been a great thing about working from home. Love days like those. The ones where I have to go out, not so much!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yea, I don’t know how I didn’t end up in the guardrail. The curve is dangerous in normal situations. It’s near where I grew up. I can’t drive in that area now, without thinking about that night. Now fortunately, I’m rarely there in the winters. Makes it a little easier driving!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. We stress when we get bad weather here, but by the same token, I appreciate our good fortune that we don’t need to deal with the sort of weather and other natural disasters as you do in other parts of the world. But like you, I am very wary of the wind, but that was after an accident when I was about 17

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes. I can relate to that … at 17 the wind effectively caught hold of me and threw me in front of a stationary bus. I’ve been a bit terrified ever since … and we don’t get the tornadoes here

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Ahh, to be clueless like we were as kids. I lived through several hurricanes when I lived in Florida. I didn’t live on the coast so no flooding, but the winds were a constant locomotive sound. There was little room for escape in advance, since there was only one main highway off the peninsula (on each coast). And they always seemed to make a turn right before they hit. Yeah, always good to respect Mother Nature.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Not only is nature dangerous, but so fickle — or it has a sense of humor. One day in Ontario a man was working in a Dept of Highways shed when a wild tornado swept through the area. Fearful of being blown away, he grabbed onto a heavy piece of equipment nearby and hung on for dear life. He was okay, but a three-ton road machine standing nearby was lifted straight up and carried away by the tornado.

    Liked by 1 person

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