Okay maybe the winds are not as bad as the tornado that took Dorothy to OZ, but they sure do blow out here.
When I was driving to Pine Ridge to start my time as the director of the center I stopped for gas at a station in Nebraska. As I pulled into the station, I noticed that the winds were blowing hard and after hours in the truck with the windows rolled up and the air conditioning cranked, I opened my door expecting to feel a nice breeze to change things up. I was right, the winds grabbed me and sucked every drop of moisture out of me. I learned quickly that a southern breeze in the middle of summer is not refreshing.
The month before I moved here a windstorm blew through town and destroyed the garage, knocked over the sign at the center and damaged the roof.
I have been told that the storm blew out the garage but did not damage the truck that was in the garage. The roof was picked up and placed in the yard behind the house.
I quickly learned that the wind will carry dust everywhere and often the curtains in the house will be straight out from the windows. There was the day I stepped outside, and I would have sworn that a storm was coming. But it was just a Tuesday in South Dakota. It is almost a bigger deal when the wind is not blowing.
A phenomenon I was introduced to in South Dakota is a Red Flag warning. This weather warning is for the elevated risk of wildfire. The combination of low humidity and high winds means that any fire could spread quickly and randomly.
The worst wind is the winter winds that whip up the snow creating drifts and obscuring roads. Dropping the temperatures and penetrating every nook and crevice. We have already had multiple Wind Chill advisories this winter.
No matter the season the wind is blowing around here. Sometimes it hurts your face, other times it refreshes. But it blows.
You get used to it.
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