I've seen it begin to rain suddenly and watched the streets and highways fill with rushing water so fast the roads resemble rivers.
I've had friends in California call me long distance wanting to know if I was “all right” after they saw stories on the news about a tornado battering some town 100 miles away from where I live, just as I've called them after seeing a story on the news about earthquakes on the West Coast. We've often asked each other “how you could stand living there” knowing that Any Day the Big One could strike. And I'm sure they shrugged it off just as I've done so many times in the past. There's only So Much one person can do about it and living in fear is no way to live. Que sera sera and all that.
So when Mrs Mom moved here from an island that has a crack down the middle of it from past earthquakes and whose roadways have signs pointing out tsunami escape routes I didn't really expect her to panic each and every time we had a storm roll through. But guess what?
Now mind you I realize the weather forecasters are in a bit of a conundrum about giving people adequate warning in the event that a really bad storm is imminent. If something happens and people get killed, armchair quarterbacks everywhere will say: “They should have warned everybody!” and if nothing happens they get accused of Crying Wolf and I'm as guilty of feeling that way as anyone.
While I don't live in say Kansas or Oklahoma who get battered with tornadoes on a regular basis they happen just often enough here where I live to the point I don't really take the weather warnings as seriously as perhaps I should. But every time they predict hail storms or the possibility of tornadoes, Mrs Mom is online begging me to come home from my job. “Make up an excuse; just come home” she texts me while my supervisor is glaring at me for being online instead of performing my job. On April 3rd of last year I was online telling her to “relax, the forecasters just love to go on TV and scare the heck out of everyone” while she was watching 18-wheeler trucks spiraling through the air in the next county live on local television. It's kind of hard to compromise simultaneously with a woman online who's scared out of her wits and a supervisor pointing to a large pile of neglected work at the same time.
Mom's Last Word
That said, I think I should just note here that a certain southern gentleman made a trip up to visit me during the summer while I was still up North. I took him to the sunrise, which was a morning ritual for me. It was August and the pre-dawn temperature was about 65. He practically turned blue, even while snuggled in his fleece hoodie. I wore a t-shirt and sandals. Needless to say we had to make a trip to the local secondhand store to get him 2 heavy wool sweaters, which he wore to every sunrise after that underneath his jacket.
It looked something like this: