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Thursday, January 13, 2011

#80 Weather

Photo: Dave Morrison
Continuing with the 100 life-enriching little nuances series …

If you are from Nebraska, you learn to adapt to changes in the weather. Temperature can change as much as 50 degrees or more from one day to the next. One day it might snow and the next day, the sun might shine. We joke about the drastic changes, but the truth is, I sort of like adapting to the weather.

As a kid, my friends and I used to shovel the basketball court at the park just so we could shoot some hoops. We bundled up in our coats, stocking caps and gloves and played the game as if it were mid-July.

Of course, in July, we never had to deal with slipping on the ice while driving to the hoop or having to dribble the ball harder because it didn’t want to bounce, but we had the benefit of never having to chase the ball too far during the winter because the snow around the perimeter of the court would stop it. In mid-July, the ball often bounded away and someone would have to chase it for a country block.

The practice of shoveling the court carried over to my backyard where a couple of my friends and I would shovel the small slab behind my house so we could shoot some hoops when we didn’t have a big game going at the park.

In my 20s, I used to go fishing pretty often with a couple of friends. We were never very good at it, but we enjoyed it anyway. We believed the old adage that fish tend to bite more frequently during the rain. So rather than running for cover, we’d sit on the bank in a heightened sense of anticipation. I don’t ever remember catching more fish during the rain, but I always attributed that to us having no idea what we were doing.

The thing is, I’d rather deal with all the wacky weather than live in a place where it’s always 70 degrees and sunny. I like making due. I like the funny situations it creates and I like the memories it makes. I’m not as quick to shovel a basketball court or fish in the rain now (although, now that I think about it, I’d still do that), but I’m making due in other ways when the weather changes.

A good snow storm is the perfect reason to forget about all of the appointments and meetings and other obligations to settle in with a good book.

Brutal heat tends to drive me indoors – anywhere the air conditioning is cranked on high. That usually leads to more conversations with people.

We had a windstorm a couple of years ago and were without power for a couple of days. That lead to neighbors leaving their homes and that lead to neighbors talking to one another and that lead to them helping one another. One of my neighbors stepped up big time and helped my roommate and I (more on that in the next post in this series).

Changes in the weather often leads to a change of plans. And sometimes that’s a good thing.


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