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A Promise to a Hurricane

September 28, 2003 began like any other Sunday in Dartmouth, NS. There was not much on the agenda for the day, so I was taking the opportunity for a welcomed break. But by mid-afternoon all that changed. We received a phone call from my father-in-law, a retired meteorologist. He checked the weather forecast for the day and saw that a hurricane; Hurricane Juan to be exact; was headed straight for us.

We spent the next couple of hours putting away all our patio furniture, barbeque, and lawn ornaments, making sure that all was secure when the hurricane hit. Finally we were satisfied all was safe in our yard, but then we wondered about our neighbors. No one else seemed to be aware of the impending storm; no one else was hurrying to put away their lawn furniture and accessories. We checked the weather reports, there was no mention of any hurricane warnings. The track and size of Hurricane Juan was seriously misjudged.

The remainder of the day was business as usual, and the anticipation of a major storm was increasing as each hour went by. I had recently attended a weekend long Weather Dancing Workshop with Nan Moss and David Corbin. The new insight I had into weather and storms confirmed my connection to weather. My introduction to the Weather Spirits filled me with both awe and a new life direction.

Later that night the winds started to pick up. We watched the reports on the local television stations, and waited for the storm to come. And it did. Just after midnight the winds started to blow and howl hard. My bedroom window was open and I began to hear wood splintering as trees were bent beyond their natural flexibility. Since our backyard is all trees, I was worried a tree would crash in through our bedroom window and land on top of us. I began to worry and I didn’t feel safe at all.

As the fear in my heart grew, an idea came to mind. I decided that I would journey to the eye of the hurricane and ask it to keep us safe. So, I did just that. As I lay in bed, I imagined a drumming sound to put me in the journey state. I went to the Lower World and asked my helping Weather Spirits to take me to the eye of the hurricane which they did. What an amazing feeling that was! So much wind and turmoil but so much peace and tranquility at the same time.

I spoke to the hurricane. I asked the hurricane to keep us safe. Then I thought about my neighbors and asked to keep them safe. Then I thought about my entire street, I can’t just ask for us and our immediate neighbors, I have to ask for the safety of the entire street. So, I did just that. But, I felt the hurricane would want something in return. So, I made a bargain.

I promised that if the hurricane kept us safe, I would never ever speak negatively of the hurricane. Suddenly, I heard a large booming voice say “YOU WILL BE PROTECTED”. This large booming ominous voice startled me at first, but very quickly I felt comforted. I tried to fall asleep as the storm passed.

The next morning, my husband got up and left for work. Since the power was still out from the hurricane passing through, we could not hear the reports on the radio. About 20 minutes later he returned, bursting through the door saying” You’ve got to come out and see this!” He explained he couldn’t get to work because the roads were blocked by downed trees.
We walked down the street and met up with some neighbors. As we walked along, we were amazed to see that considering the amount of trees that fell there was hardly any property that was damaged! Two vehicles had trees on them, but they were not damaged in any way. Another neighbor had a tree fall against the deck on the back of the house, but the deck was not damaged. Lots of trees were down, but they just lay across yards, and the street. We were amazed!

Point Pleasant Park, a large forested park along the Halifax Harbor, was closed to the general public due to the amount of destruction caused by the hurricane. Huge sections of the park were destroyed, approximately ¾ of the wooded area was flattened. Work crews were in there removing the downed trees that blocked the maze of pathways through the park, along the water, and in the parking lot. A couple of weeks later it was opened to the public for one weekend only. There was a huge out cry from the citizens of Halifax and surrounding areas wanting to go in and see it for themselves. The first thing you were met with was a long wall of stacked logs that stretched 20ft or more in length. As we walked through the park, we could hear other people commenting on the extent of the damage, hear their sadness and see them crying. It was very difficult to walk through and see the extent of the damage. It made my heart and my soul cry.

It hurt me so much that when we returned home from the park I had to journey to the trees. I was not prepared for what they told and me and I was very surprised by their words! The trees told me not to be sad for them since they themselves were not sad. They had a good long life, and to them, this is just a part of the life cycle. They knew this would happen and that was okay as it helps create more life. This has been happening for thousands of years and will continue to happen for thousands more. Those words really impacted me and I have not been sad since!

Over the next few months, I came across a lot of people who were affected by the storm. I worked as an insurance broker at the time and for two months straight, I talked to people who had damage of one sort or another. However, with all the people I talked to, I noticed a reoccurring comment made by almost everyone. “It was amazing, with all the trees that fell, none fell across the house. They fell all around the house!”

It was several months before I realized that the booming words I heard from the hurricane “YOU WILL BE PROTECTED” that night, did not just apply to me, but to everyone! Everyone that was in the path of the hurricane that is.

Considering the extent of damage caused by Hurricane Juan along its path across Nova Scotia and into Prince Edward Island, I saw a lot of good things come from this hurricane. Any trades person who needed work had it for at least six months or more. As the power was out from 3 to 7 days, families spent time together, playing games and talking, since the TV could not be turned on or computer games played. Neighbors came together and had street barbeques to use up food so it wouldn’t spoil, and for many neighborhoods that was the first time they met.

Yes, some people did have more serious damage, and yes a few lives were lost due to the hurricane or as a result of the hurricane. That cannot be overlooked however; the overall greater good also cannot be ignored!
So, in keeping with my promise, this hurricane was amazing!!!

Angela Jeffreys
Shamanic Teacher and Healer