Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hang Onto Your Hats...Literally

It is now day 9 of crazy winds here where I live.  We are known for our chinook winds and we have very many days of wind of throughout the year. Strong winds.  I mean, this is one of the "symbols" of our city, a tongue in cheek joke about our winds as this doesn't really move but local humor looks at it like this:

"When ball hangs at 22 degrees we consider it 'Calm' 
When ball hangs at 45 degrees we consider it 'Fairly Calm' 
When ball hangs at 90 degrees we consider it 'Little Windy' 
When chain stretches we considers it 'Kind of Brisk' 
When chain breaks we consider it 'Sure is Windy'"

That "wind gauge" is huge.  The top of the ball is almost the my height.  And on Sunday I would think if the ball really was a real wind gauge we would have been past the "Sure is Windy" point!

 Some of us are well acquainted with headaches that come with these winds.  I am now on a week long headache.  Thank God it's controlled with IB.  I feel sorry for those who get full blown migraines from the air pressure these winds bring.  But Sunday reached new heights of what windy is, even for us wind hardy Southern Albertans. We experienced a wind storm the likes of which I don't think I ever remember happening. I don't even know where to begin to tell you what an insane day Sunday was in Southern Alberta.    On the highways the wind flipped semi-trucks over like they were lego. In certain sections the wind gusts got up to 144 km/hr (89 km/hr).  That is category 1 hurricane force!  I live inland!   In Calgary, they closed the downtown core because windows were breaking out of high rises and falling on the sidewalks below and pieces of buildings were coming off.  I wouldn't have wanted to be the pilot trying to land this plane.  Or one of the passengers now that I think about it:

 There were several grass fires burning out of control in southern Alberta.  In my city there was such a crazy grass fire that had started on the prairies, jumped the river and within minutes rushed toward the west side of our city that they had to evacuate neighborhoods.  Highways were closed down due to no visibility from the smoke.  It was intense to say the least.

I have to tell you, I'm ready for the snow that's predicted tomorrow if for nothing else but to say good bye to the wind!


Barbara H. said...

Oh, wow! So glad we don't have that here. I'm glad the end appears to be in sight.

Willow said...

Wow Susanne! That's WIND! We get the Santa Ana Winds which blow hot from the desert to the east but I don't think that they reach Hurricane 1 speeds. I never thought I'd see you writing, "Bring on the snow!"

nikkipolani said...

Wow. Hopefully the snows have come and that ball has come back to vertical. We're supposed to be getting some windy conditions, too, but nothing quite like your chinooks!