Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Fury on the big lake


It started last night, the high winds TV weather people had been warning us about. Two in the morning the roar woke me from a deep sleep. High on a bluff above Lake Michigan, tucked warmly into bed, I heard the wind. Or was it the waves. The cat jumped off the bed and streaked away. And then the power went out.

Prime viewing seats.

Prime viewing seats.

People say a tornado or a hurricane sounds like a freight train. In the dark, listening intently I could almost hear the train whistle come and go, overshadowed by the intense roar of wind and water. In the dark, not being able to see the lake, all I could do was feel it.

The vibration of the waves pounding the shore hundreds of yards away came from deep in the earth, up through the bluff, through the house footings, through the floors and up into the legs of the bed frame, through the deep mattress and into my bones.

Yesterday I walked this beach now under water.

Yesterday I walked this beach now under water.

The house sighed. I lay still. Listening. Waiting. Planning where I’d go if I had to. Considering how to find the cat in her hidden safe place.

I toured the house with a flashlight, checking windows, doors. Listening to things hit the roof, scratch the windows. Calling the cat who remained hidden. Eventually I went back to bed.

The power came back on after an hour and a half. Welcome lamp light made the roar not so ominous. Still, the lake was completely dark and sounded angry. I toured the house again, turning on lights, checking, checking. Looking for the illusive cat.

Remembering cats of years ago I pulled out her food container, shook it and called her name as I wandered. Suddenly, out of the shadows, she raced toward me calling back loudly. Silly girl. She got a tidbit or two and then we both retreated to the warm bed, doors closed against the fury of the lake.

I fell asleep to the sound and feeling of nature running wild, still wearing my glasses, cat purring on my chest. We woke an hour later to find daylight beginning to reveal the lake in all it’s mesmerizing beauty. I ventured outside but it is impossible to catch the feeling of it in still photos, the winds so strong I could barely stand upright on the lower bluff, shielding the camera from the sandblast with my body.

As the morning progresses the light changes. The water turns turquoise and navy and brilliant white. The air is clear and the island at the horizon is visible.

Under dark clouds the air has been swept clean.  See the island?

Under dark clouds the air has been swept clean. See the island?

I glance out and see a bit of sun; careening down some of the 42 stairs to the beach I catch a brief moment when the sun slips from behind racing clouds and tips a few white caps with brilliant joy.

Fleeting light.

Fleeting light.

I don’t even care that I ran out without a coat, that the wind is bitter, the sound overwhelming, the moment brief.

I just know I am blessed to be here.



Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

5 thoughts on “Fury on the big lake

  1. That’s a beautiful view from the house on the bluff, and when the weather is good I suspect the sound of the waves would be soothing, although ominous when the winds are on a tear. I am glad to hear the worst of the problems was the noise and short term loss of power – perhaps now Mother Nature will be more gentle for this Christmas Eve and tomorrow’s Christmas Day. Wishing you a peaceful, Merry Christmas!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Absolutely gorgeous!


  3. Good story!


  4. You and your cat are so brave! What a scary night.


  5. This is a beautiful freeze- frame of a Magical Moment in Nature. What can one do, except in Grateful Exhilaration, feel like a small important participant in the Great Mystery? Wow.


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