Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

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Everyone Knows It's Windy

Last night, a storm was blowing its way into the Bay Area as I was leaving for the BASFA meeting. And I do mean blowing. I drive a Chevrolet Astro minivan, which is not a great vehicle in high winds, although not as bad as, say, a motorcycle. Also, when I replaced the tires on the van a while back, I picked harder-wearing tires, which means they're not that great on slick roads. Being a cautious -- some would say timid -- driver, especially with this combination, I kept the speeds down and irritated people behind me who wanted to drive at 70 mph in a driving rain with wind whipping so hard that the wipers couldn't clear the windshield even at their highest setting. I got the distinct impression that I was driving diagonally a few times, which is not a good feeling.

To show that it's an ill wind that blows no one no good, I heard that a tree had blown down across all four lanes of southbound I-280 at Crystal Springs. I get on I-280 at CA-92, just south of there. No wonder there were so few cars on the road with me; traffic had been reduced to what could squeeze by on the shoulder as they tried to clear the tree under lousy conditions.

This morning a particularly nasty storm cell on the trailing edge of the storm was sitting right in the middle of my path to work. I was grateful that I didn't come to work ten minutes earlier, as if I'd done so, I would have been soaked just trying to walk the 100 m or so from my van to the building. As it was, I just had to fight my way through hailstones and more high winds while climbing the grade out of San Mateo on CA-92 up to Hillsdale; the cell was fast-moving and cleared through just as I got to the parking lot.

Today we have a bit of a break, which means I have no excuse not to go walking at lunch, but then we should get another storm that, unlike this last one, is supposed to be cold rather than warm, so we may see some snow on the hills again. Hm, I work in the hills now. I wonder what the altitude here at Campus Drive is.

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