conditions during the festival weekend in Lincoln didn't satisfy everyone
all the time, but it's not the first occasion when plans were subject to
change. In everyday life, announcements of schedules and prices sometimes
mention specifically that they're subject to change without notice. We
usually notice changes in weather without being notified, and current
technology adds considerable information about weather changes that are
likely to come our way.
Where I grew
up there was a saying to the effect that if you didn't like the weather,
you should just wait 15 or 20 minutes and it would change.
I knew from
experience that sometimes we'd have to wait longer, but I still liked the
idea and the statement.
years, I found out that people make that claim in more than one state. At
first I was disappointed to lose the sense of uniqueness, but I'm glad
that variable weather isn't limited to one small corner of the world.
from a child's time perspective, it's encouraging to think that when it's
uncomfortably hot or cold, the situation won't be that way all the time.
If it's still too hot after waiting half an hour, an hour or even half a
day, at least the rule of thumb provides some hope for relief in the
I knew the
20-minute plan worked sometimes. When the sky turned dark and the wind
came up on a warm summer day, you could feel the excitement in the air.
Even adults would hurry to finish what they were doing outside, and I soon
learned that the cooler temperatures after a thunderstorm were worth
of change was also reassuring if the weather was already more exciting
than necessary. When repeated thunder made me jump or lightning kept me
awake, when hailstones pounded on the roof and sent me scurrying for cover
— literally under the bedcovers to try to hide from the sound, I knew it
was temporary even if temporary seemed to last quite a while.
of course, we experience days that feel almost perfect, and we'd like them
to continue, but perfect weather doesn't guarantee perfect happiness.
a couple of weeks ago as I sat on a park bench and was surprised to feel
goose bumps on my arms in the middle of August, I knew from the
predictions that within 24 hours I'd probably be wishing for that cool
breeze. In fact, my unscientific notes on the calendar during the week
told an alternating story day by day: cool, warm, hot, cooler, hot, cool,
nice. From another part of the state, someone wrote to me that their
department picnic was conveniently scheduled on the 70-degree day
sandwiched between days of 90s and thunderstorms. Sometimes people's plans
and the changing weather do fit together.
there were times this past weekend when scheduled activities and the
latest weather seemed to be made for each other. Just as my mind got stuck
on the thought that the morning humidity was enough already, the next
change in direction brought a refreshing breeze. I finished at an outdoor
event before a thunderstorm began, and the downpour ended by the time I
was ready to leave a building and head for my car a distance away. The
timing could hardly have been better.
else, what we like and don't like about the temperature and humidity, the
winds and the rains and their timing, all help to keep our minds occupied
and our senses alert to the world around us.
As it's been
said, "Don't knock the weather; nine-tenths of the people couldn't
start a conversation if it didn't change once in a while." *
I guess you
have to start somewhere. You can always take a hint from the weather and
change the subject. You don't even have to wait 15 or 20 minutes.