Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Windy, Wild, Woolly Weather!

We were in a taxi returning from Vientiane, Laos, when we received a text message from home...literally, our house where our daughter, CJ, is living. ‘Just had the worst hail storm I’ve seen in twenty years’. (There’s something disconcerting when your child starts referring to time, in decades...and does she really remember a horrific hail storm, from when she was six years old? Probably...knowing her!)

The damage was minor considering the ferocity of the storm. Only hail dents in two of the cars, one of which was parked under cover and was pelted from the side, by golf ball size pieces of ice. The force of the wind reached up to 90 km per hour. CJ said she couldn’t tell which direction it was coming from...it was coming from every direction. Cyclonic.

Some footage of the storm, complements of downunderchase on Youtube.

They’re just getting on top of cleaning up the mass of leaves/branches on the ground and fallen trees...we live on a heavily treed block of land. A major clean up job, we've had to do many times over the years, but glad we're not there for, this time!
Before leaving for Thailand in October, news reports said Australia was in for some nasty and freakish weather, and they weren’t wrong. They've hardly seen a few days straight of sunshine in the Brisbane area.

Southern parts of Thailand were suffering floods on an epic scale when we arrived a couple of months ago, and since, the UK, Europe and America have copped their fair share of hellish weather. Today the Phillipines...mudslides. I won't tempt fate and ask, what next?

The word from home is that the worst is still to come. (photos - http://www.couriermail.com.au/)
The things I remember the most, as a kid, about the 1974 floods in Brisbane are that we couldn't resume the new school year on time (yay!) and all the aspects of the aftermath, especially the stench, mess and mudlines that lingered long after the water had subsided. Again, we were lucky, our family home was not affected, but my parent's business was, along with much of the city. Cyclone Wanda's rain depression flooded over 8500 homes in Brisbane and surrounding areas, 6000 of which were unsalvageable. I have no idea how many businesses went under.

The current floods are described as being 'a disaster of biblical proportions' and authorities say 200,000 people in 22 cities and towns have, so far, been affected by the worst floods in Queensland's history. I'm thankful that this is not happening close to our home, which is in another part of the state and set high on a ridge.

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Catherine said... Best Blogger Tips

It's scary when nature goes wacky for awhile. I'll never get the recent Australian fires out of my mind.

Paul Garrigan said... Best Blogger Tips

Strange days indeed. The weather back in Ireland has apparently been the worst in living memory. There are people who try to dismiss global warming but there is definitely something happening to the weather around the world.

Snap said... Best Blogger Tips

Catherine I hope I never come close to facing a bushfire...unpredictable, terrifying and devastating. We could see the smoke of the Black Saturday fires, as we flew into Melbourne (2009) and I remember the burnt orange coloured sun as it set in the afternoon.

Snap said... Best Blogger Tips

Paul, even if global warming is miraculously proven not to be the cause of our freakish weather, of late...I wish all governments would start getting serious about cleaning up their countries.

Theodora said... Best Blogger Tips

What has been weird for me is the progression from whinging about the weather in Queensland to watching a natural disaster unfold, with the scenes from Toowoomba and Grantham especially harrowing.

We're in Brissy right now, and, as far as this bit of the burbs goes, everything seems normal, folk mowing lawns, no obvious water... But then we're not far from Ipswich, which is suffering...

Glad all your family are AOK, though.

Snap said... Best Blogger Tips

Theodora it's been horrible watching the images on TV from here...makes me feel very helpless. But if I were over there, I'd be just as helpless.

Enjoy my home town...not much to do there, we're renouned for being 10 years behind everyone else ;)