25 August 2009

Battening down the hatches

'Severe weather warning for damaging winds,' says the BOM
'LEAVE WORK EARLY urges SES,' says The Age.
'Wild storms heading for Melbourne,' says the Herald Sun.

But we're a brave bunch of Onions, so we'll weather the storm in our big ole, rock-solid three storey Victorian Terrace.

In the spirit of the storm, here is a list of our favourite wild and woolly books.

1) The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
'I thought perhaps it always rained, or looked dark in England.'
The moor and Mary and the secret garden all start to blossom in the springtime - but it is in the cold and the dark that Mary first arrives at Misselthwaite Manor, and it is the wailing wind that is blamed for the desolate crying that Mary begins to be sure she has heard...

2) Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
Has there ever been a better weather word than 'wuthering'? (It's a Yorkshire word, so it pops up in The Secret Garden too.) But Heathcliff is stormy enough not to need any help from the weather. Also... we love to watch Kate Bush dance up a storm.

3) Somebody's Crying by Maureen McCarthy
Love, guilt, fear, desire: nobody does stormy emotions like Maureen McCarthy. And this time there's a heartbreaking climax in Warrnambool's driving rain and roaring wind.

4) Cicada Summer by Kate Constable
Sometimes storms can shake things loose... and that's not always a bad thing. Eloise's long, hot, life-changing summer ends in a fierce storm that has surprising consequences.
One of the best things about Melbourne is that even in the dead of winter you can get away with wearing a short denim skirt and long stripy socks. You might suffer blue knees, but you won't get actual frostbite. But this winter, Sunny Hathaway's got more to worry about than her socks. Her life is chock-full of (blended) family - so she's bound to encounter some stormy patches along the road to trying to make sure everyone is feeling sunny and warm.

6) Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
The storm scene is just a device, you say? Just trying to cram P&P into any list that's going? Well, what would you have done, were you Jane Austen? How would you have got Jane Bennett to the Bingley's after the ball, and had her stay put with a cold that went on for long enough for her to become comatose, delirious and fall in love, in that order, and have Elizabeth join her and develop her own thing with Darcy?

7) Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
How would you like to be proposed to by Rochester, only to have darkness fall, the wind roar, and be soaked with rain under the giant chestnut tree ... and then in the morning, Adèle rush in to tell you the same tree "has been struck by lightning and half of it split away"? Not a great omen for any girl. Also... check out this lovely bit of cheese.

PS Storm Boy - if we hadn't already included it in a previous list, it would have taken pride of place here. We love you, Mr Percival.

No comments: