Morning everyone! The recent wild and woolly weather events here in Queensland have inspired me to write an ‘as it happens’ blog today. Usually my posts offer travel tidbits from trips we have taken. I am working on my next article too, by the way, but this post has ‘jumped the queue’ so to speak. I did mention, at the start of my blogging journey, that travel, as it appears in my blog title, can refer to far away places or be a trip simply to the front door to collect the mail.
My travel this morning involved a trip along the motorway to our family GP to pick up a pain-killer script for our eldest son who has a broken collar bone. This travel, along the motorway, made me think and contemplate life and its absolute randomness. In all the frantic busyness of our lives we are totally and completely at the mercy of whatever mother nature decides to throw at us. In terms of weather and in terms of our own bodies, in fact, we are totally powerless to completely predict or prepare for whatever comes our way. If he hadn’t gone out on his bike with his mates, our son wouldn’t have fallen off and ended up with a fractured collar bone. Pretty random. Is it all luck (bad in this case) or are we all just at the mercy of whatever the ‘universe’ decides to throw at us?
Tropical Cyclone Debbie delivered no mercy and some of this ‘randomness’. She was reported as being on the way to hit Queensland for days before it actually happened. People had prepared yet she still wreaked havoc when and wherever she decided to hit. Central and North Queensland residents and businesses are going to spend months cleaning up and re-building. It seems as though South East Queensland and Northern NSW will not escape from the destruction either. We can control so many things in life, or think we can control them, yet mother nature and her almighty power is not one of them.
As I drove along the motorway, in complete sunshine, it was surreal to think of the situation only 24 hours earlier when schools, businesses and workplaces were closed or closing with a huge wall of water closing in. My little sister, in Tassie, rang to see how we had fared in the ex-cyclone craziness and I was almost wary to report that everything, as far as I could see driving along the motorway, looked like it was back to normal. Sure there was debris around and water laying about in spots off the road, but nothing too drastic other than a few traffic lights not working due to storm related power outages. How quickly things can change. How deceptive things can look, too, as I know that off the motorway and in people’s homes, backyards and businesses there are unreported and unknown amounts of damage and mess to clean up. As long as everyone has their lives and their health and families are intact.
Yet our health is also something else that we may take for granted, like good weather, as it only becomes a true test of our mettle when something goes wrong. When the sun is shining and everything is looking good, it is easy enough to coast along but the true challenge appears when all is not as it should be. Those facing chronic or even a terminal illness know this all too well.
Resilience. Human spirit and the will to carry on. Positive thinking. Our unique human ability to show empathy, listen to and help one another. I think these are the things that get us through life and its many challenges. I hope people will have all of these things as they face the huge task of cleaning up after Cyclone Debbie smashed her way down the coast. I hope my boys will have these things too as they face broken bones and whatever else life delivers to them.
AND it does help to remember that the sun will always come out, eventually.
Henry Ford said it pretty well so I will sign off for this post using his wise words.
Written by Esther Colavecchio.