Google+ Sandra's Stories: Trigger

Monday, 25 February 2013

Trigger happy weather forecasters

Last week I wore hiking boots, a ski jacket, and heavy duty gloves to work because the weather report said that it would snow. It didn’t snow, and I was hot. It was the final betrayal in a series of weather-related treacheries…

When I was growing up my mum was a big fan of giving weather related advice. Every day she would predict the weather and give me suggestions about what I should wear. Mum was always right and I spent many days feeling smugly comfortable in my weather-appropriate clothes. I didn’t know how she did it but her weather predicting abilities were incredible.

Then I moved out of home. Without my mum’s help, I found myself to be a daily victim of the weather. I was always too cold, too hot, or rain drenched. One day I complained to my mum about how I was suffering. She was flabbergasted. She said ‘Sandra, the only reason I know about the weather is because I check the forecast!’

I was shocked. All those years I’d thought that Mum was an amazing oracle, only to discover that her powers were freely available to everyone. Since then I’ve been a convert to the forecast and follow it carefully. However, a few weeks ago, without any forewarning, it snowed heavily in Tokyo and the whole city shut down in panic. Train services were cut, the highways closed, and the footpaths became dangerous piles of icy slush. It was chaos. The trains are packed out at the best of times; this is what happens when services are reduced…
Kawasaki station  when services are cut: That's a lot of salary men!
Photo courtesy of poor Nana who had to commute in this.
That day I got stuck for five hours on a bus crawling along a highway outside of Tokyo before I managed to catch a train home. Everyone had a horror story that day. People were enraged that the weather forecast had failed to warn us. Like me, they felt betrayed and there was a lot criticism directed at the weather forecasters.

Well, the forecasters were obviously ashamed about what they’d done because ever since they’ve become extremely trigger-happy. At the slightest drop in temperature they predict snow but so far hardly a flake has fallen. I find myself frequently dressing in heavy duty snow gear, only to be disappointed (and hot) when the snow doesn’t come. I don’t know who I can turn to if my mum isn’t an oracle, and the weather report can no longer be trusted.

Note: The day after I wrote this blog post, it snowed so my faith in the forecast has returned.