Freezing rain? Yes. Sleet? Yes. Wind chill near single digits? Yes. Ice accumulating on vehicles, streets and roads? Yes. Anything else? Yep; thunder and lightning.
There are some things you don’t typically expect with sleet and freezing rain and lightning would definitely be one of those. Certainly does make for an interesting start to one’s day. Even if one’s day starts a few hours earlier than usual.
It wasn’t concern about the weather that roused me out of bed at three o’clock this morning but it has been weather that has kept my attention. Watching Wichita news, checking weather forecasts, walking outside and checking the street. Offering my input into the president’s decision tree to determine whether we forge ahead with the regular schedule, cancel classes or compromise. Currently, we’re in compromise mode and going with delayed start.
Maybe by ten o’clock, the streets will be fine and the roads will be clear. Maybe not. Conditions vary considerably across the area. Last time I was outside, there was a light film of ice on the car but the street and driveway had none. Thirty-five miles from here, they have a half-inch of icy sleet on the ground. The radar map shows the color of winter storm lining up from Oklahoma City to Wichita with a transition to the color of rain at the eastern edge of the colliding fronts. Ark City is right in that transition fringe.
We find ourselves in life’s little fringe zones from time to time. Somewhere between inconvenience and danger. Somewhere between sad and tragic. Caught in the buffer between a yawn and a scream. Sometimes, the kids get a snow day and we trudge off to work anyway. Sometimes we slide off into the ditch on our way. Sometimes we take a look at the sleet piling up on the windowsill and figure taking a few hours of earned leave time might be better than risking the drive.
No matter the situation we ultimately take responsibility for our own well-being. Sometimes we also have to take responsibility for the well-being of others. Neither of those is as simple as we’d sometimes like to think. Especially when our thinking rouses us out of bed at three in the morning.