Talk of the Veður Will Do

Much of yesterday’s pronunciation class was spent on weather (veður) vocabulary. “Weather is a very big part of our life here,” my teacher said. “It does matter for us.”

Having only been here for a short time (one month tomorrow!), I do understand this to a certain extent. I mean, people talk about the weather everywhere, but it does seem to have a bit stronger–and more volatile–of a character here. In the last few weeks, I’ve experienced my fair share of weather: rain (of course), frost, glaring sunshine, hurricane-strength winds, clouds followed by sun followed by clouds again in the space of an hour, all while the temperature fluctuates gleefully back and forth.

And today: þoka, or fog, and a whole lot of it.

I overslept this morning, by about 45 minutes, but somehow, because I literally had 15 minutes to get dress and run to the bus in order to make it to my morning class (if I had missed the bus, I wouldn’t have been able to walk to school in time), I actually got out of the door extremely quickly–and walked straight out into a wall of opaque cottony fog the likes of which I have never seen, and which immediately put me in mind of a short story by Stephen King that I read and really enjoyed in high school and coincidentally was just talking about with my dad. No points for guessing which story…

Now, perhaps you are more familiar with fog than I am (this is not really a frequent weather condition in either Arizona or New York), but this was incredible. I couldn’t see from my driveway to the corner (it’s about 15 feet), and when I got to the corner, I couldn’t see the bus stop (another 15 feet). Looking down to the end of the road where the (bright yellow) bus sits before turning around and resuming its route in the other direction, I couldn’t see it or the shoreline or the houses or the buildings on the water’s edge. Ironically, considering the start I got, I was well ahead of schedule, so I had plenty of time to stand there at the bus stop and marvel at the occasional biker emerging quietly from the fogbank, to listen to an airplane on the runway behind me which I couldn’t make out at all, to watch cars creep around the corner and then disappear into the mist right in front of me.

As soon as I got on the bus and we made it around the corner and up the hill toward school, the sun was more direct and the fog faded almost immediately, as if it had been a clear bright day all along. It was pretty amazing; I’ve really never seen anything like it.

Nicely enough this gives me an excuse to post a beautiful song which is ostensibly ‘about’ weather. Happy Tuesday, everyone.

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