Friday, October 7, 2011

Wind and More Wind

The last several days have seen continuous 45 mph winds out here on the plains. A sure sign that the cooler weather of fall is on the way. In fact, the first frost might well happen this weekend. Which means an end to all the daily fresh melons and vegetables from the garden until next year. Just time to clean up and prepare for next spring and then batten down for the cold and snow of winter.
Other than all the branches and street lights and other things blown over and about, the worst part of the wind is the dust and sand. There are stories of the original settlers out here in sod houses being unable to stand the day after day beating of the wind and dust, to the point of giving up hope and just lying down and dying. The wind reminds me of the Santa Ana winds in southern California: the ionic charge in the air makes one literally feel bad. So needless to say I have not been in the most pleasant of moods. Of course, neither has anyone else, so we all have been ready to verbally spar at the drop of a hat. A good time to just hunker down and remain calm. At least the wind has died down a bit now as the cold and rain gets ready to settle in. But it still leaves my mind in a flipping and flopping state where seemingly random things connect to other things and then hook into something even further afield. For example ...

I love the fall weather once it gets here. There is that sense of drawing back into one's self for the coming days of winter, the slowing down of the pace of life. There is nothing that says job well done like the feeling of brisk air in the morning and the sound of geese circling the harvested corn fields.

The sound of geese as they migrate also reminds me of my grandfather. When he found out that he had inoperable metastatic cancer, he lived on with his steel will to see one more cycle of planting and growing. And when the fall and harvest came, he decided it was time and died. I remember slipping away from work, bundling the son in his infant carrier, and driving the 30 miles over to his farm to just to sit with him in his final weeks. And I remember the sound of the honking geese circling as I would leave to head back home.

That of course brings to mind how lucky I was growing up. I not only knew all my grandparents, but some of my great-grandparents. A consequence of being the oldest child of the oldest child on both sides of my family. In fact with the exception of L's grandfather, we had a complete set of grandparents on both sides when we were dating. So we both grew up with the presence of grandparents in our lives. It makes me sad to think of all the people who aren't so lucky.

Enough meandering, time to get back to work.


  1. That fall weather sounds awful!

    You were lucky to know your grandparents. I only knew one of my grandmothers but that's luckier than some. Being the youngest of the youngest I was just on the wrong end of the family!

  2. Wind storms do not sound like fun.

    What a blessing to have your grandparents around for so long.


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