The typhoon that wasn't: or the Day of the Dead
It's weather yet again, friends. So sorry.
Granny came home from shopping on the other side of the island yesterday to find an anxious Beloved awaiting her. 'I'm glad you're back,' he said. 'There's a typhoon warning. All the schoolchildren have to be home by three o'clock.' (It was after three then.) It did feel strange too. Unnaturally still, even with a slight wind, gloomy, the air hot. What is meant, she thinks, by the calm before the storm. She went searching on the internet, thinking he must mean 'hurricane'. But there were no hurricane warnings in either east or west Atlantic. So what then? The weather felt sinister still.
They waited all evening. The wind got up a bit, from the south east. Air and wind were hot hot hot. They went to bed. 'Don't think it's coming,' said Beloved. They slept - or Granny did; Beloved claims to have had a bad night. She woke in the morning to furious rain, hot wind still, leaks in the sitting-room via the glass roof - a normal autumn and winter occurrence here; sofa's - luckily they are light bamboo ones - have to be moved around. No typhoon though. But there has been a typhoon - Typhoon Cimaron - it's bashing the Philippines right now, poor things. Quite how anyone could think it would cross the Pacific, the whole of Africa from South East to Northish West and arrive here she can't quite understand. Maybe with the rain and hot wind the island has the farthest fringes of it; but no more.
A typhoon, of course, is the Pacific version of a hurricane. And there was (almost) a hurricane here last year- though unreported in the UK. The Spanish Meteo totally failed to pick it up and issue warnings. Only the American systems did; that was how Granny found out what exactly they were in for, searching the internet at ten o'clock at night as the winds grew ever more furious. Obviously this year, Meteo weren't going to be caught napping, and warned everyone, just in case. Granny is glad they got it wrong - again. Hurricanes are not nice.
She now has a working camera - and has to admit she maligned Beloved unduly. She found her re-chargeable batteries in the charger. Still she now has two spare sets, so can keep them by her for when the ones in the camera fade. Good. Sorry, dear Beloved. Sorry.
She still can't take pictures of the chicks though. With the (hot and wet) wind blowing straight at them they are huddled in the corner of the coop so impossible to see. She will try again tomorrow. She is sure (?) that you can't wait.
Oh and today of course, is the feast of All Saints. A holiday. Though, thank god, there is no Halloween here, no trick and trick, though it is not like Mexico's Day of the Dead - there are no dressed-up bones in sight - people do troop off to the cemetaries to put flowers on the tombs of their dead. Granny approves of this. Her significant dead are in Kent (her mum and dad) in Oxfordshire (her twin sister) in West Somerset (the father of her children). It would be hard to honour all these scattered graves, even if she was back home in the UK. From here, she can only honour any of them virtually; thought lilies, carnations, chrysanthemums; what else?
It's so hard to think of those you love as skeletons - the beloveds are all skeletons now. But the flowers help flesh them out; still more memory fleshes them out. She sends plenty of both from her heart, blown by the not-typhoon wind, blowing in the right direction today - what luck - to reach them. She sends them with love. Of course.