29 January 2013

One Day. Damn Oswald.

We’ve been through all kinds of weather here in Queensland over the last week all thanks to a cranky fella named Oswald; Cyclone Oswald. Things went awry up north earlier in the week and Mr Oswald made his presence known here over the weekend, the Australia Day long weekend mind you. Saturday was a washout with plenty of sad faces as picnics, BBQs and backyard cricket matches were cancelled across the state. I figured I could eat my snags and swing a bat on Sunday until I discovered things were about to get a lot worse…

Sunday rolled around with wind and rain which steadily grew worse. I was busy getting ready for Mum’s birthday afternoon (delicious cake recipe up soon) so was not all that concerned with the weather but when I looked up from my icing I figured the Mayans must have got the date wrong: wild winds beyond anything I’ve ever heard before, black skies and pouring rain, surely this must be what the end of the world looks like?

It only got worse from there. Once the party was over, as the sun set it was time to get to work, protecting rescuing the outdoor furniture which was much harder than it first seemed… After much tugging and wrestling, finally our furniture-cover was battened down over the outdoor lounge suite, everything was tucked into corners and little items were brought inside so as they didn’t grow jet-packs and turn into speeding missiles courtesy of the cyclonic winds. Time for a cuppa and curl up and watch the weather right? Wrong. For the rest of the evening, 15minutes of every hour was spent crash-tackling the furniture to stop it from running away along the deck, whilst being thrashed by 150km/h winds and drenched by Oswald’s never ending rain. If it wasn’t so frustrating it would have been hilarious.

At 1am it was time for an uneasy sleep with every gush of wind promising to shatter the windows. By 1.30am I was just closing my eyes when ‘whoosh’ – sounds like the furniture cover is making a break for it. So, up again, out the back for more wrestling only this time the power goes out.
Note: furniture-wrestling in the dark is even trickier, they should consider this for a new Olympic sport.

I finally fell asleep sometime around 4am and woke to much the same weather but the power was on thank goodness.

You think the story ends here don’t you? Just you wait…

At lunchtime I was just settling down to pass the time with some MarioKart when the power went off again. It did not return for nearly 10hours. In that time there was panic over the things in the fridge, manual garage door heaving, scrabble by candlelight, many stubbed toes and a couch nearly set alight (how ironic to have your house burn down during a cyclone). Hurray for 10pm when the power returned, but not so quick, the excitement isn’t over yet… 10minutes later there were several large groans, a pop and a ominous sounding thunk from the kitchen, followed by some foul smelling smoke – the fridge had finally given up the ghost (it was nearing it’s 30th birthday). This delightful little event caused the power to short-circuit (I know, I’ve got to be kidding right?).

Sometime in the early hours of the morning, after several trips to the electricity box and the spare fridge was wrestled from the garage to the kitchen by two weaklings, I fell into bed. Ironically this morning I woke up to blue skies and 30-degree heat, of course the lovely weather appears just as we all head back to work.

So thanks for a great weekend Oswald – I missed the nation’s celebrations, my toes hurt, my backyard is a swimming pool, I’m severely sleep-deprived and my arms feel like I’ve been in training to be a professional weightlifter.

Photos by Krissie.