Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Rain, wind, fog, hail

My goodness but it was dramatic getting to Mount Martha on Sunday.

It didn't look as though it would be when we left Mount Helen. True, it was misty and drizzly and you couldn't possibly say that it was hot, or even warm.  But the weather wasn't doing anything noteworthy to say that it is June.

As I drove past Gordon, the mist turned to fog, the drizzle turned to rain and it got darker and darker and darker.

The roads got wetter and wetter. The wind picked up.

We stopped at the Ballan services for fuel - and both got soaked as the wind blew the rain in under the canopy.

It was horrible driving down over the Pikes Creek Reservoir bridge, but fortunately there was a roadwork truck emblazoned with lights ahead of us, so we could at least see where we were going.

Then it all lifted a bit and was much easier driving by Bacchus Marsh and Melton, down past the Western Ring Road and onto the Westgate Freeway.

Until we got to Footscray, where it got very, very dark, the heavens opened, hail came to join the party and it was almost impossible to see. They've been doing roadworks along there and in the rain it is impossible to see which road markings you should be following. The traffic had slowed to a walking pace. We all inched along and took very great care.  Except for the idiots who decided that they didn't need to put their headlights on and so were very difficult to spot. Made merging lanes an even greater challenge than it would have been anyway.

We all inched our way over the Westgate Bridge, heading towards the city.  It didn't look as though there had been a storm in the city and when we emerged from the Burnley Tunnel everything was pretty much dry.  All we encountered from then on were patches of drizzle.

We had a good time at Mount Martha. Stella and Tony both seemed to be in reasonably good form. We had beef and rosemary pie with roast potatoes and veg, followed by apple pie for lunch. We looked at some old photos and postcards. It wasn't a long visit but we enjoyed it.

Heading back home again we had reasonable weather and good driving - until we got back to the Ballan/Gordon area where once again the heavens opened and we had to drive with even more care than usual.  I am coming to think there is a permanent weather system tethered to that bit of the world.  The last few times I've been through there with Lindsey it has been pouring down.

We had dinner and then stayed over at Lindsey and Ian's place on Sunday night. Lindsey and I left early on Monday morning to go to work. Ian also left for Melbourne. Jim, Rupert and Hugo were left in charge at Mount Helen until later today when all three of us, but separately, will return.

This was my view from East Melbourne this morning:

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