Wellingtonians are hardened to winter wind. Wind that anywhere else would be called a gale is referred to as a strong breeze in Wellington. Any wind that doesn’t physically blow you over is a mere zephyr. It takes something exceptional to get the attention of Wellingtonians.
Last night the weather had our full attention. A storm that originated at the South Pole has been sweeping up the country over the last 24 hours. For everywhere other than Wellington it meant snow but for us it meant rain -with accompanying gale force winds up to 140km/h.
At one point 25,000 people were without power partly due to trees being blown over and taking power lines with them. House rooves started to lift and outdoor signage took to the air.
Our place took to shuddering as each gust of wind arrived and the curtains bowed out from the windows as the wind found new ways to sneak into the house. The garden took on the look of a bomb site as leaves and branches and rubbish bins and patio chairs blew around settling far from where we last left them. Both Poppie and Bella simply refused to go outside and everyone decided the best place to be was in bed.
This morning the full extent of the damage became apparent. One of the olive trees we planted about 8 years ago had succumbed to the wind and lay parallel to the ground. We had talked about removing this tree over summer but couldn’t bring ourselves to do the deed – to wield the saw. It’s ironic that mother nature has done it for us.