Summer is over, but the heat remains, and I’m wondering what ever happened to the relief-bringing southerly busters. I know a version of them still exist, but not with the same regularity, and even more rarely where I live. In fact, they seemed to have singled out my very suburb to skirt around. On days when a big storm is expected, we’re warned to prepare the property. Secure loose objects that could become flying projectiles. I prepare my property. I listen to radio reports of the storm’s progress up the coast. It’s at Eden. Now it’s reached Wollongong. Excited residents call up to describe the wild weather. It’s at Camden; it’s at the airport and traffic’s a mess; it’s at Chatswood, traffic lights are out. It’s almost here and I settle in to watch the spectacle.

            And then – nothing. Well maybe some rain but nothing to write home about. A few gusts of wind but without any conviction. Meanwhile, it’s all happening to my west and to my north. What’s wrong with Turramurra?

            I’ve always loved rain, and Turramurra used to boast the highest rainfall in Sydney. If there was even a remote possibility of rain in Sydney, it would already be raining in Turramurra. As a child, there was nothing more exciting to me than the southerly buster. We’d all be playing outside – maybe chasings – in someone’s back garden. Suddenly the air would become still and heavy and was now tinged with an almost luminous green light. It even smelled different. There’d be a momentary pause in the game – something was about to happen. First a few fat raindrops. An ominous swaying of high branches in gum trees. Soon you’d hear back doors all over the neighbourhood banging as they were blown shut. By now, we kids were all running home as fast as we could before the heavens opened. When the rain came, it fell in sheets, first vertically, then horizontally as it was tossed around by the squalls. I’d get home wet but exhilarated.

            Of course, the climate is changing on a macro level. But is it possible for my one suburb to be singled out for exclusion? To be sure, Turramurra has experienced the extraordinary, even biblical rainfall of recent years. Waterlogged trees came down and roads flooded. Not to mention levels of humidity normally found only in the tropics. But that cleansing southerly buster and its promise of relief, at least in my little corner of the world, seems to have gone missing.

Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, every month.

We don’t spam! Read our [link]privacy policy[/link] for more info.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments