This month I’m looking at weather. Although it’s perhaps not an immediately obvious part of nature – we tend to think plants, animals, landscapes – it has a major bearing on the world and is inextricably entwined with those more traditional elements.
Whilst, on the whole, this isn’t going to be a technical look at weather, I will be looking at a few of the more scientific aspects. If this is something that you find interesting, you might want to take a look at the Future Learn course about weather. I completed this back in September and found it very enlightening. I can now also understand isobars which makes me very proud! The met office also has a learn about the weather section, from which a lot of the future learn course was drawn from (it was taught in association with them).
Instead of the science behind weather, I’ll be focusing on the language of weather, weather in literature, weather and plants and animals and of course, given the timing, snow. I’m also interested in traditional methods of forecasting the weather and will be trying my hand at some weather poetry.
I have a difficult relationship with weather. Because of my ill health, there are some types of weather which are really restricting and isolating – rain stops me going out, snow and ice stop me going out and stop people coming to me. It also affects my pain levels and I tend to find I have worse pain during the transition times of year – April and October – when the weather in the morning is different to the rest of the day or one day is drastically different to the next. My body doesn’t like that changeability.
I have always hated the wind. I feel attacked, I feel buffeted and I feel bullied. I don’t know why and I have tried to explain my dislike of wind to people in the past and received funny looks in return… I think the wind makes me feel vulnerable. I don’t like the potential dangers which come with it – flying cans and houses and the risk of ending up in oz! There was a Christmas, many many years ago, with storms and high winds. My dad had to go out in the dark to do something critical. We had no electricity. He took a torch. He was gone for ages. I was getting really worried. I have a vivid imagination and at the age of 7 or so I was picturing all kinds of terrible scenarios. I tried to raise my concerns and was told off. I see now that my mother was probably just as worried and that her reaction was to shut me up. But it’s fed into my history with storms.
I can’t begin to imagine how our ancestors felt about these violent winds, the flashes of light from dark skies and the loud rumbles of thunder coming out of nowhere. I still hate storms and I know what they are, how they came to be and I’m also safe inside a brick house. Weather in the past must have been experienced so differently to how we see it today.
Do you have specific weather related memories? Do you have a favourite kind of weather? Or weather which you really hate? Let me know!