Wednesday 15th February 2017

I was reminded today that it’s only 92 days until I go storm chasing again.
We’re doing something different this year.  Last year was high octane insanity.  We were driving at tornadoes coming towards us, jumping out the van to get video and photos and then dashing away at the last minute.  As someone whose first tornado experience was being sideswiped by an EF-2 I thought that was as crazy as it gets.
However in 2015 we lost our windows to hail, and in 2016 I was standing there, nothing between me and the tornado hurtling towards me.
Last year was an incredible, incredible experience and one I doubt that will ever be topped.
So this year I wanted to do something a little different.  I’ll admit there’s part of me that thinks if you poke the bear too often you’re going to get mauled.  That said, we’ve been with some of the best chasers in the business.  These guys know their stuff and can get us into and then outta danger really, really safely.  But on a personal level, I don’t want storm chasing to just be an adrenaline rush for me.
So this year, myself and a bunch of friends are going it alone.  We’re graduating if you like.  This means staying well back, this means going to the wrong storm and busting.  It means probably less tornadoes and better structure.
I’m super-excited about this.  It means I’ll get to do a load of timelapses and supercell shots.
But it happens in 92 days and I’ve not made any plans.  I’d wanted the financial insanity of xmas over first.
So I need to be looking at flights.  I want to find ways I can travel lighter.  I desperately need a rucksack solution that will take my camera lenses and laptop safely.  But all that needs to wait until Saturday.
You see, this week is being very busy on the day job.  It’s commanding a lot of my mental energy and I feel exhausted at the end of it.  It’s possible that my medical conditions might be playing a factor as well as occasional fatigue is a symptom and this seems to manifest itself in a few weeks of mental rather than physical fatigue (it usually happens when my stomach starts feeling like I’ve swallowed glass).  That, or I’m just really busy at work.
Today I proved my technical competence by saying I’d look at a major problem and ended up pretty much single-handedly fixing it.  All those years of building and maintaining Action-Figure means I know a lot about hosting websites.  I still got it!
I was teaching swordfighting again tonight, continuing on from last week at looking at attacks from Guardia Alta with the sword and buckler.  I’m loving how these sessions are going.  We’re going really, really slowly over the material  (There are 10 guards, each with their attacks and then their counters.  The Guardia Alta guard has 9 attacks.  We’ve done 4 of those in 2 weeks.  This is going to take a long time!).  However, the students are really analysing the attacks and everyone is working together and enjoying it.
I needed milk for tomorrow morning which meant a stop-off at the supermarket on the way home.  Whilst it’s a really quick stop it does seem to add to my travel time which when combined with the fact that they seem to be constantly shutting down sections of the M4, meant I never got home until gone 1am.
Ordinarily I’d write the novel, even if only for 30 mins, but I was so shattered I went to bed.
So other than The Climb I got no writing done today.  I hate that, it’ll leave me in a foul mood tomorrow.
But then I’ll remember tomorrow that it’s only 91 days until I go storm chasing again, and that’ll make me happy!
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels.  Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.
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