I’m writing this evening, as my chunk of the Eastern Seaboard is lashed by rain. At least it’s warm–unseasonably so–because there’s not much worse than a cold, soaking rain. Most of the time, rain (of any sort) isn’t unusual, this time of year. This time around, though, its origin is a little odd.
This is the remnants of Hurricane Patricia. The oddity is that Patricia was a Pacific Ocean hurricane. She got huge, quickly, and made landfall over the weekend in Mexico (no casualties, thankfully, so they’ve got that going for them), then crossed over the central Mexican mountains into the Gulf, and ran up to the north and east. Much weakened, naturally–just some rain, maybe some moderate winds. But the fact remains, it’s unusual for a storm to start ‘way over there, and continue through to ‘way over here. Can you say, “climate change”?
From a scientific point of view, I think this is a bigger deal than I’m seeing made of it. (I could be wrong, to be fair…) The storm had to be tall to cross those mountains. I mean, they aren’t exactly small mountains–which I’ve had to explain to a few folks here in the East, who’ve never seen anything bigger than the Appalachians. The Rockies and Sierra Nevadas make them look like anthills. (The Tien Shan seemed an order of magnitude bigger yet, but that’s a story for another time.)
My biggest concern is that this is almost certainly not going to be the least of the storms in upcoming years–and that we (humanity) won’t escape them with a “zero” death toll next time around.
It got me to feeling a bit introspective, though, and running a couple of “what ifs” through my head. What if, instead of one “doomsday scenario” occurring, we get hit with a “perfect storm” of two, three, or more? I mean, I doubt we’ll see just one–economic collapse, or total war, or what-have-you. More likely, it will be several, probably in quick succession: the affairs in Syria expand, triggering economic problems, possibly exacerbated by an oil shortage… In the meantime, the mess we’ve made of the environment continues to fling superstorms and rising seas at us.
On the bright side, at least we wouldn’t be worrying about alien invaders, or massive meteor strikes. 🙂
No, all things considered, I’m happier working at getting things within my reach in order, the better to muddle through whatever comes our way. Right now, that’s winter (fixing the blower on the wood stove, making sure the chicken coop is insulated and water-tight, seeing to their water-heater). There’s also the madness that is the holidays (guests visiting, going on trips, etc.). You know–life as normal. How’s normal in everybody else’s neck of the woods?