Kansas is known for its gentle rolling prairie and simple beauty, but let me tell you “WE HAVE WIND!”
I remember reading once about early settlers who sojourned West, the book was a compilation of journals and letters of pioneer women. Besides snakes falling from the sod ceilings onto their tables and beds… dirt floors, prairie fires and pestilence, there was the wind, that literally drove the women mad!
I can’t imagine what it must have been like riding in those covered wagons, jostled from rut-to-rut with the wind driving dust and grit into their faces and lungs.
The wind blows in Kansas more days than not, from spring though the cold winter months. It can bring with it refreshing spring rains, but also a tornado’s furry and straight-line winds. It can bury fence rows under snow drifts as high as the roof tops. Tumble weeds stack one on top of the other against wire fences while others jump the pile and float like skeletal aliens across dirt roads and highways.
I found this quote most revealing…
A nerve-wracking, peace-destroying wind has been blowing ever since I arrived…It rages and roars, whistles and shrieks…if I let myself dwell on it too long, I shall never be able to stand this country. Evelyn Springett came to Macleod, Alberta from Quebec in 1893. (Published memoir: For my Children’s Children, 1937) http://theprairieline.wordpress.com/tag/pioneer-prairie-women-2/
There are days, even now in our controlled environments, that the wind can be more than annoying. It sucks the life out my lawn until it resembles shredded wheat, shrivels my flowers, and makes me long for a cleansing rain.
I grew up in rural Iowa where the wind was not as prevalent. Our house sat on a hill and our front porch was where you could always find a cool breeze to dry your sticky skin during the humid days and nights.
I never really experienced the wind until I moved to the Kansas prairie. I’ve lived here longer than anywhere else.
I’ve kinda…sorta… maybe have gotten used to the extremes that this state hurls at me. I always look forward to a new season, and when the heat of late August is about to strangle the parched landscape, the wind shifts to the North, and I welcome it with open arms.