A calamitous unfurling of weather events and cheese cooked sandwiches.



The weather sure is out of wack. Yesterday we witnessed a hail storm. It was unbelievable. We both watched the mesmerising event. Hailstones as big as golf balls would be a cliché. They were huge and so true. I am using Trump speech here. It isn’t a difficult habit to get into.

It was  morning’s second coffee still clad in an assortment of pyjamas. A fearful sight at our age. We were still mulling over not going ahead with the house-move. And hadn’t had time to  recover  previous levels of serenity and domestic equilibrium.   I had murmured something about buying the place opposite and just renting it out while still staying in own place. I came with some figures of income on the back of the envelope . There is more than one way to bake a good soufflé. Helvi just yawned and that was that. It felt so good to be relieved of that option as well. In the meantime the clouds outside darkened ominously.

A spectacle of nature’s power was in the making. We just knew it. Food was getting short so quickly dashed out to get bread, fresh milk, nectarines, sugar plums, frozen spinach cubes and a cheap red Shiraz-Merlot wine ( $ 2.78). This wine is a real corker and called Precious Earth. We try and do our best for climate change and we like to share this as a recommendation. A previous remnant of curry was patiently waiting in the fridge which we thought we might eat in case of any emergency. One just never knows when an old curry might come in handy!

We did not have to wait long. The first claps of thunder heralded the coming event. I had already looked up our BOM (Bureau of Meteorology) forecast which gives a very accurate coming of weather events in any given area. The coming and prospects of  calamitous unfurling of weather events has always been a favourite pastime of me. I can’t change the weather. No guilt indulging a pleasure of nature’s own making. The terrible ravages of nature will increase if we are too slow in taking the necessary actions. Here is our Australian Prime Minster talking about starting a new ‘clean’ coal power station. Can you believe this?

The claps of thunder were getting closer. Little did I know that a few hundred metres away three ladies sitting on a bench were already struck by lightning. The park known for a yearly tulip festival and through which we walk  almost every day with Milo, witnessed this terrible event.


I don’t know why the three women were sitting in a park not far from shelter during a massive storm. Perhaps they were eating cheese sandwiches? In the meantime, while still unaware of the calamity in the park, Helvi made some cheese sandwiches in preparation for the storm. The roof was being hit by hail stones, still moderate in size. A quick bolt downstairs into the garage and outside to bring in the car. The thunderclaps were right above us. We still hold a belief that for every second passing between lightning and thunder clap it translates a kilometre in distance. There was not a single second. They were so severe even Milo got nervous. We just lowered our heads each time. Not out of religious habits, far from it. It was fear!

The hail stones now were fearsome in sight and size. How fortunate to be inside. We watched  canon-sized balls belting down on  roof and garden. It was by far the best (or worst) hailstorm I ever  witnessed.

What a spectacle of nature’s force.


32 Responses to “A calamitous unfurling of weather events and cheese cooked sandwiches.”

  1. Yvonne Says:

    I’m glad you moved the car into shelter. Now, to find out the fate of those 3 women.

    It was a blissful 7°C when I woke this morning. Hallelujah.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Hope all three are alright. One had severe burns and airlifted to Sydney.
      7c that is fantastic. Here it went down to 12c this morning. Right now it is sunny but clouds are building up. We might get another storm late in the afternoon.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Curt Mekemson Says:

    I am with you Gerard on appreciating a good storm, not so much on Trump-speak. I’m surprised no one has come out with a book yet. Someone must be working on it, a collection of Trumpisms. I think I will start collecting them. 🙂 –Curt

    Liked by 2 people

  3. bkpyett Says:

    Fascinating to hear of your change of weather. It’s cold here in Victoria too with even some snow forecast for the mountains!
    One minute hot with bush fires and next, freezing cold! We never get bored though.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. happy go lucky Says:

    I wonder if the 3 unfortunate women might have loved to see a storm and thought it would be a 3 minute wonder. Why else would you avoid nearby cover. I also wonder and hope the one that was burnt is ok.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. petspeopleandlife Says:

    The poor women who were struck by lightening. It is never safe to be outdoors when a thunder storm is looming. Lightening strikes anything in the open and generally goes for the tallest object. Perhaps they were near a tree or some other tall object or were sitting on a meta bench which would be a prime conductor for attracting lightening. I hope they are all ok.

    The storm sounds frightening with hail so large. I pity anyone at work who had a car parked out in the open.

    Anyhow, some how I have missed the post/s about you and Helvi moving. Why are you moving? Did I read the correctly?

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I don’t know the details but I do know they were sitting under a huge conifer in the middle of that park. That tree is enormous and very bulky with about 6 large seats surrounding the trunk. A favourite place for people to sit and eat some lunch or watch children play.

      Yes, who would have thought, Ivonne, but we were close to moving. A house opposite came up for sale and we were given a pre-view by an agent. It was a nice house and with a lovely garden. We made an offer but the day after had another look. This was followed by a restless night when both of us got up early. There were tears and much talk.

      The seriousness of moving came to the fore. Helvi was upset and frightened of the change. The furniture might not fit. The task of having to go again through renovating and making it ‘feel right,’

      We always need to feel good about the living space, Ivonne. It took Helvi a lot of work and time to create our nooks and crannies in the garden etc. It is our home which to us has always been more than mere bricks and plaster.

      Our furniture and bits and pieces have taken on special place and is part of our lives. It might have felt lost in this other place and protested or objected.

      We are now so happy not to have done it. The move away was perhaps a result of a touch of heat. Albert Camus wrote something along those lines.

      What do you think?

      Liked by 1 person

      • petspeopleandlife Says:

        Gerard, I think that after having slept “on it” the “second thoughts” came into play and you both realized that moving to what you thought was a better house proved to not be “better” after all. I can see why giving the move more thought was the appropriate reality. Moving is never easy and at your age and mine as well, it would have been a major undertaking. What has been used over the years is familiar and it becomes an ingrained habit. Your present home is comfortable and as you have written, it has nooks and crannies that Helvi has created. All of that is the total of who each of you have become and that can not be duplicated.

        Personally I will never move until I am forced by either death or ill health and will need to either go to a crematory or a nursing home. I love my home where I have lived since 1963. It is not very modern and not pretty but it is mine and I own it lock, stock and barrel. I will probably croak when I am driven off of this property due to illness. I can not imagine living happy anywhere else. I pray for instant death just as my parents were each so lucky to leave this mortal earth.

        Those are my thoughts and I’m sticking to them. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

      • Christine Says:

        It’s a terrible thing to be taken away from one’s home, to another state. This has happened to a dear friend, now in the “care” of a close relation. He has been used to a house phone and cannot manage the mobile phone; even the unlocking is difficult for ‘newbies’. He has written a letter, just a few shaky lines (right hand affected by shingles nerve damage) and called himself ‘Prisoner No1’. A terrible thing.
        We’re fortunate to be in our own homes.

        Liked by 2 people

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Yes, that sums it up alright, Ivonne. Thank you for your wise support and insight.

        Home and hearth. We have only been here for a bit over six years but now feel part of it. Our previous home for fourteen years was the 120 acre farm on the Wollondilly river. ( aboriginal for flowing over rocks) and before that twenty years in inner Sydney, Balmain.

        I am sure we will stay put and while not waiting for the Mount Calvary laminated mock veneer chipboard coffin or the pre-heated crematorium, am not fearful of whatever the future still holds in store. A great consolation is that no one escapes the final future.

        I don’t think I would like to become an inhabitant of an aged-care home. They are often called; ‘the setting sun’ or ‘eventide’. If that arises I will be outa here as quick as a rat up a drainpipe.

        We might think that a bigger or better house brings happiness but that is a fallacy which at my age I should know better. Anyway, we are at peace again.

        No storm today.

        Liked by 3 people

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Yes, Christine. I sometimes wonder if I have reached my capacity to handle mobile phone. I have got an iPhone that now connects to all sorts of Face-book, Twitter and other connection. Strange people want to be my friend and I had a most disturbing message from a girl asking to be my friend. I never heard of her and her picture was topless. Probably a scam from Nigeria. Next I would be bundled in a car and murdered.

        I think it must be terrible to be subjected to be moved and needing help. The first sign of nurse putting a nappy on me, I hope I’ll still have the presence of mind to seek a better exit.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Christine Says:

        Hahaha . . you’ve made me laugh. It’s important!
        Your books should be turning up soon.


      • gerard oosterman Says:

        So happy you will be getting the books. Thank you so much, Christine..


  6. leggypeggy Says:

    Heard all about your calamitous weather events. Tragic about the women struck by lightening. It is a horrifying and unpredictable force.Three times I have been in houses (including my own) when they were struck by lightening. Loudest sound I have ever heard.

    Glad you had wine to get you through.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Our houses have as yet never been struck by lightning, Peggy. The worst thunderstorms were while living on a farm in Holland. The farm had a thatched roof and even though we had lightning conductors along the ridge of the roof and edges, we were scared of it being hit.

      Yes, wine sometimes helps but only a glass or two. More than that and one pays a penalty when Miss Euphoria takes revenge.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Big M Says:

    I saw the news about the three unfortunate women. I think one is still quite sick. My Dad was struck by lightning, oncel He reckoned it took two large Scotches to get over it, never mind about the bloody doctor.

    We’ve had a few weeks off, and, as always in the last couple of years thoughts of retirement come to the fore…ah, a nice little tree change!

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Big M. Retirement does happen. You will love it and will be busier than ever before. Work that one choses to do at own time is very nice and wonderful.
      Your dad was lucky to escape the lightning. He must have been strong or it went straight through him like a conducting lightning rod device on a roof.


  8. Christine Says:

    I’ve been in the house in a severe hailstorm; windows smashed by hailstones. You all go downstairs to the small bathroom and pretend to your children that you’re not scared.
    Some storms are okay. Refreshing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Christine. I generally like storms and acts of nature. On the farm we had a long lasting drought. The rain would always stop about a hundred kilometres from our farm. It drove us mad and even though we had a water license to pump from the river the electricity pumping the water uphill was expensive.

      When the rain finally came we were jubilant and danced around in the rain joined by our three dogs. It poured for a whole day and night.

      The drought lifted and the grass became green overnight.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. shoreacres Says:

    Whenever I hear thunder, I get off the docks. Lightning has a preference for sailboat masts when there aren’t any suitable trees around, and I’ve seen it strike many times in the marina I overlook. Beyond that, I learned a few years ago that “rogue” lightning can strike as far out as ten miles from a storm center. I pay attention. Those poor women — haven’t they ever heard the golfing people talk about how the worst place to be on a golf course during a storm is under a tree? I hope all recover well.

    As for the hail, it’s the one reason I keep paying for the privilege of covered parking. Of course it protects the finish from our hot sun, but even better is the protection it offers from the occasional hail storm or downed tree limb. Since I don’t expect ever to purchase another car, I’m inclined to take better care of this one.


  10. shoreacres Says:

    I just read this fascinating article about lightning, and thought you might enjoy it, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. hilarycustancegreen Says:

    I guess we’d all better get used to extreme weather.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    Trump’s non-existent climate change is showing its face here in California now. Non-stop rain, mudslides, trees down on top of roads, houses and vehicles, and roads closed. Seems as though the world is awash./


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