General

Yet another Quiet Day

In line with a long established practice to post a blog on my website during bad weather, here we go again.

I left off yesterday waiting for Su to return for dinner and was expecting a busy Saturday. Su returned just before 9pm after leaving instructions with Sam and the nurses. She had even picked up the milk that she had asked me to but which message I missed. We uncorked a bottle of red and had beef in hot pot, which we took time to savour, in between which we discussed family relations in the context of the hospitalization of her father. Su should be rather tired, having had a long day going through temperature differences and moderating between the temperament of her siblings and parents. But she was very much alive and robust after dinner and was chatting with her friends on WhatsApp. I retired and was mentally preparing for the next day.

I got up around 5am and saw on my phone a pre-warning from the Hong Kong Observatory that Tropical Storm Lionrock had been taking an extraordinary route so that the No. 8 Southeast Gale or Storm Signal would be up at 6:40am and would remain in force for at least the morning, with the likelihood though that it would be replaced by the Strong Wind Signal No. 3 late morning or in the afternoon. That was not much indication or advice for planning the day’s activities, of which there would be plenty.

I went back to sleep, but got up again shortly after 6:15am to check the progress of Lionrock; and as forecast the No. 8 signal was up at precisely 6:40am, accompanied by announcements that all schools would be closed for the day and buses would stop running soon. Not my problem; and I went back to sleep. Su and I got up around 9:30am to assess the situation, for her father was to go through a series of tests and I needed to find out whether the lunch and the various meetings would still go ahead according to schedules.

A flurry of messages followed. The lunch was cancelled; but it took a bit longer for a decision to precipitate on whether the meeting scheduled at 4pm at Zetland Hall could go ahead, bearing in mind that the Observatory was a bit evasive on when the No. 8 Signal would be downgraded to No. 3, as was predicted with much optimism. The members had decided to wait until 2pm before taking a position, but by 1:15pm, it became blatantly obvious that it would be dangerous if not irresponsible to ask members to make their way for a meeting in the midst of pouring rain and landslip warnings, even if the Typhoon Signal was downgraded. It was decided to call off the meeting there and then.

The upshot was that all my appointments for the day were cancelled by 1:15pm and what promised to be a long day turned out to be another quiet day, as far as the outlook was concerned.

We decided to indulge ourselves with more food and drinks shortly before 2pm; and we were rather good at that. First we uncorked a 2001 red which needed some time to breathe, so we uncorked another younger red, both of which we eventually demolished with beef and greens. Meanwhile, Su communicated with her siblings on the latest status of their parents and decided on the immediate way forward for their father.

On TV news, the anchors were busy getting sound bites from amateurs who were ready to criticize the Observatory for the timings of weather warnings and the warnings themselves, all rather unnecessary, but I am not going into that. We had some terrible and tricky weather from Tropical Storm Lionrock; and that was factual. The rest were irrelevant. Another weather system is developing and could be with us before long.

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