typhoon hato

August 23, 2017


I woke up this morning at 5:14am with sounds of storm: gusts of wind and torrential rain hitting the window pane outside. The sky is a pale and ominous blue, and because I live by the mountains, I can hear the trees bristling outside - leaves and small branches swirl up in the wind and in erratic and turbulent patterns. It's my first time ever experiencing a typhoon, and it happens to be the strongest one in Hong Kong that has occurred in 5 years, reaching a signal number 10, the highest possible level of storm warning. The wind speeds reaching upwards of 190 km/hr has led to hundreds of canceled flights, a paralyzed stock market, and business and school closures.

My gaze is transfixed on the window for minutes at a time, in awe of the destructive powers of the typhoon; the patterns of the rain are reminiscent of the ones that I observed during my Northern Lights backpacking trip in Sweden - but now, instead of green light and electromagnetic fluxes, there is water and wind (and increased havoc). It's hard to believe that mother nature can create something so profound, yet also something so catastrophic. With great destruction comes great transformation, and with transformation comes the opportunity for rebirth. I feel humbled by this experience, and my prayers go out to those who have inadequate shelter to brace themselves from the storm.