8 days? One of the longest silences The Spruce Tunnel has experienced. Sorry for that. If I listed all the bad things, difficult things, dangerous things, frustrating and fearful things that have been going on here in such a short time, it would sound like a “storm” has been swirling around me. A storm made of elements bigger than I am.
Some of them will eventually work out well; some will not.
I’d rather write about this storm, that swirled up and down my street yesterday, same weather front that millions of Americans are experiencing. There are storms like this — and there are “storms” of another kind.
I wanted to stay home because of my “storms.” Shelter and hide. It was looking too bad out there. But I needed about three minutes of Wi-Fi, that’s all, but it would be worth going out; and it could be an adventure driving through the snow clouds that whirled around, driven across the street by strong, frigid winds.
I had to climb through these to get to my car. Broom, shovel, scraper in hand, “storms” bring a lot of extra work just to be able to keep on going.
I didn’t know if these were snowbanks or snowdrifts along the side of my driveway —
— but I could see some beauty in the patterns — even though I had to battle the elements just to get into the car. The icy wind found its way under my hat, through my scarf, past my gloves, and up into my arms . . . Bare skin! Brrrrrrrr.
I adjusted all my “protection” many times while I tried to uncover my car. Just like Nehemiah’s strong young men building the city walls of Jerusalem with a trowel or shovel in one hand and a sword to fight off the enemies in the other hand, so I was trying to keep my scarf and coat on while using the scraper and broom.
When storms swirl around you, expect to get really, physically tired!
Once out onto the highway, though, I was astonished: The roads were a little okay, but they were busy. Lots of cars, lots of other people out in the storm. All the parking lots I passed were filled! Stores, restaurants, gas stations — all looked busy.
Everyone was going about their business as though there was no storm?
Here are the snowbanks along the side of the parking lot I was aiming for. The snowbanks were twice as high as my car, but I can’t show you that; it was too cold to get out and do something as frivolous as taking a picture. You can’t always do the things you want when there are “storms.”
In the midst of the swirling wind, the sun came out, and this line of trees caught my attention as I came out of the store:
So, on the way home I marveled at how many people were out, as though it were any busy Saturday on a nice day. They didn’t seem to be doing anything different. . . .
And that made me nervous.
I’m seeing storms of all kinds, surrounding us, swirling around us, threatening us, and . . . life goes on.
There was a man in the parking lot that I was just leaving. He got out of his car, began to walk, and a big gust of wind blew a cloud of icy snow into him. He wore an overcoat, unbuttoned, over a business suit. The wind nearly tore his coat off. He was not dressed for the storm.
He and many others had not prepared for the “storms.”
I arrived home, between wind gusts. Things were calmer for a while. Mission accomplished with the Wi-Fi. I took home with me the memory of people walking around amidst the swirling clouds of snow, leaning into the wind, grasping their coats close to them, but nevertheless, going about their business.
I deliberately took into my house with me the sense of normalcy amidst the storm.
“Bias to the Normal.” A survival technique.