Today was a stormy weather day in more ways than one. I hate stormy weather days. They’re uncomfortable, they make me anxious, and I have to get into hunker down mode where I don’t do much of anything, but frantically check the news every 30 seconds to see if there is some update on a situation I have no control over.
I made my first mistake to check the weather on Twitter. It’s always awful on Twitter. Today was especially awful after some news having to do with Hillary Clinton’s email server and Donald Trump’s denial that he tweeted an anti-semitic picture. It just felt gross all around.
Of course, then there was the knee-jerk and gut reaction analysis on both sides regarding the presumptive nominees. Basically, one could hear what they wanted to hear to affirm their political belief, disregarding facts they didn’t want to hear. But then there was the backlash to said analysis, and the name calling, and apocalyptic predictions. It was exhausting and awful. But I kept doing that thing where I had to check the political weather every 30 seconds to make sure I wasn’t missing anything.
After work, I planned to head across town to Tom and Heather’s (and Theo’s) place for a grill out. Andy and Angela were in town as well. Heidi and Joel and their son Henry, as well as Mike were going to be there as well. As soon as I got home, the sky turned dark and that anxiousness started to bubble and turn my stomach. I didn’t know whether to brave the weather and drive over, or hunker down. I paced around my apartment, and checked my weather app every 30 seconds anyway.
A little after six, I decided to make the drive. The traffic and weather weren’t great, but the trip over wasn’t as awful as I thought it would be. I made it to their place about 25 minutes later. It took me a few minutes to compose myself after I walked through the door, but soon we all settled on Tom and Heather’s screened in porch for a meal of brats, coleslaw, potato salad, and watermelon.
We caught up about new jobs and old friends. We held babies and passed around packages of cookies. We sipped craft beers and told stories. Even though it was still raining and thundering outside, we smiled and laughed, and carried on without prognostications about future political events. The night was just about eating, talking, taking care of babies, and getting out of the normal routine.
I’m usually in tune with the severe weather warnings of the day, both the natural kind and the internet kind. I sometimes get so obsessive about them that I forget about all the other parts of my day. While I’m powerless to do anything about most of the major storms that pass through, I forget that you sometimes can just ride them out. The world will continue to spin even as stormy weather goes through. Of course, it helps when you have good friends and a good meal to help you through it all.