austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Can you hear me, that when it rains and shines

So, the day after. I stayed home, taking the general advice of Authorities that people who weren't essential should not go into work. I am the quintessence of inessentiality at work. Oh, there's exciting prospects for what I do for the future of the company, but if the future starts 24 hours later who'll tell, besides people who got the old invite date?

But come the afternoon I did venture out, to the library to return some of our hurricane reading books (the library was on normal work hours, probably to shame me into thinking I could too have made it in to work), and to see what things looked like. Mostly, though, it was smaller branches and leaves in piles off to the sides of the roads. They did very well, near us, cleaning up the debris, probably again helped by our not having any major power or other failures.

I don't want to suggest that a hurricane is a desirable thing: it killed people, it hurt people, it killed and hurt animals, it destroyed property. There are going to be people trying to recover for ages to come. But one of the side effects of the hurricane, the cancellation of all the usual things to do for a couple of days, I appreciated. It's easy --- especially easy for me --- to fall into routines. Breaking out of those routines is good for making one appreciate both the disruption from the routine and the joys of the routine. Holidays don't quite have the effect of an event like a hurricane or blizzard have, in that they're predictable and subject to their own routines. The major storm, though it has its rituals and traditions --- the rush at the grocery store, the news anchors standing on the shore explaining all this water is from rain, the people complaining that everybody's wimps for making a big deal of this --- is essentially unpredictable in how it's added to the calendar.

I know how lucky I am that Hurricane Irene did not hurt me, or seriously hurt my family or friends. The worst inconvenience to me was the Doctor Who premiere got as muddled in transmission as in the story. (My brother and sister-in-law lost power, and suffered some basement flooding.) I just want to write something fumbling and inexact to say how I appreciate what it gave me.

Trivia: According to Richard FitzNigel, treasurer to England's King Henry II, ``if a man standing on the stump of an oak or other tree, can see five other trees cut down around them, that is regarded as `waste'. Such an offence, even in a man's own woods, is considered so serious that even an officer of the Exchequer cannot be excused but will have to pay a fine proportionate to his means.'' Source: 1215: The Year Of Magna Carta, Danny Danziger, John Gillingham.

Currently Reading: The Letterboxer's Companion: Exploring The Mysteries Hidden In The Great Outdoors, Randy Hall. My father picked it up at the library as hurricane reading for me; it's a slim book, and seems like a fair introduction to the topic, although I like the introduction bunny_hugger gave me more.


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