Thursday, December 1, 2011
Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind
I can handle just about any kind of weather: heat, freezing cold, ice, snow, rain, and hail. Anything but wind. Wind makes me crazy. And my life miserable.
I ran into town around noon today to deposit a check and gas the Jeep in prep for the 12" of snow we're supposed to get starting late tomorrow. The winds were so strong, I couldn't open the door at the pump. On the way home along I-40 through Tijeras Canyon, I hit a headwind with the tenacity of a brick wall that nearly stalled the Jeep in its tracks. In front of me an 18-wheeler started to shake, rattle, and roll, and someone's lawn chair (?!?) missed me by feet on its merry skip across four lanes of traffic. I jumped off the nearest exit to finish my journey along the relative safety of Route 66 and stuttered along behind a line of fifty gazillion other high-profile vehicled chumps with V-8s smacked down by Mother Nature.
Right now, I'm watching entire mature pine trees bend themselves like yoga freaks right outside my office window. The birds have all disappeared from my feeders, although the ravens are diggin' the thermal ride high up in the still-blue sky. Ravens are never scared.
If I look outside the window next to my front door (because if I actually go outside, I'll be pelted with flying leaves and small rocks) beyond the frenetically swinging porch swing and across my driveway and down, down, down and out, all the way to where the woods end about three miles from here and the American Short Grass Plains begin their relentless march toward Oklahoma, all I can see is a curtain of dun-colored dust obscuring what is normally a fifty-mile view. And what I think are a few small animals and maybe a toddler or two spinning around in the whirlwind.
And the sound. Like a million freight trains screaming. Like ghosts not yet retired. Like zombies moaning for brains. I suspect this sound must be very similar to what mass murderers hear ringing in their ears for years before they finally snap and take down a post office, school yard, or lunchroom.
If you don't hear back from me in a couple days, it means I was blown away like the rest of my world, Dorothy-ied up into the sky and into some bizarre Oz-ian universe where at least I hope I'll get a pair of ruby slippers for my troubles.
Until then, I think I'll go run a vacuum. It buries the sound.