Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Wind

It is the second day of spring, and the sun was bright and strong.  I had lots of indoors activities to do, but spent some time outside this afternoon.  Although the temperature was in the low 60s the wind was brisk, and at times, made it feel colder than low 60s, even in my somewhat protected back yard.  The wind was from the West, so the protection was not as good as if it were from the North; my house faces North, and blocks the wind in my back yard.

Before I moved to Texas I read stories about the wind howling, roaring and moaning.  In Western Massachusetts, I do not recall the wind howling and moaning. It may have, I was just not aware of it.... It whipped, it rustled, it whispered.  The leaves swayed, the branches swung. 

After moving to Texas, I understood what noises the wind can make: it roars, it howls, it moans.  Today, there was no dust.  But dust is often a companion of the wind. 

Sometimes, when the wind blows in from the North, it is a bone chilling wind.  I think of that wind as a "Blue Norther."  Folks around here associate a "Blue Norther" with a blizzard snow storm.  I do not think we necessarily need the snow.  Just the bone chilling wind, to have a "Blue Norther."

In the spring, the wind swings to the Southwest.   Even at high speed, it has a sense of being a kinder wind.  It is a warming wind, and sometimes, a moist wind.

On the Caprock, the wind from the East is often a blessing.  We are a dry area, and the wind form the East carries Gulf of Mexico moisture.  As it climbs the Caprock,  clouds form and sometimes, the Llano Estacado is the recipient of rains...

No matter how much flash flooding we have from rain, rain is a blessing in West Texas, except during cotton harvest.  It may delay planting, but when planting happens, there is moisture in the ground.

There was a book written about West Texas wind:

It was made into a silent movie:

The wind can create "wind chill"  If you have not experienced a strong wind chill, it is amazing what a difference the wind makes in terms of comfort.  Phenomenal! 

This is information about wind related fatalities:

There are a lot of electricity creating windmills being erected in this part of the world.  While thought of as a "clean energy" there are still many concerns about the use of windmills.  They alter, and to some, destroy the skyline. The are dangerous for birds, that might fly into their blades.  Some windmills are erected not too far from residential areas, and their noise is considered a nuisance.

I do not like being out in the wind.  It makes breathing difficult.  It can water your eyes so it is difficult to see. If the dust is blowing, it blows into every orifice of your body. It hurts, it makes you itch. It creates negative ions and static electricity that can result in visible sparks, audible snaps, and keyboard disabling electrical currents. 

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