Weather or not- just have a yarn | Opinion

Weather or not- just have a yarn | Opinion


Opinion
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Chatting about the weather could have a bigger purpose than just seeing if your neighbour got more rain.

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Editorial

IT makes headlines when there's too much of it and it makes headlines when there's not enough.

It dictates travel times, events, profit margins, harvesting schedules, business decisions, clothing, sports outcomes and plenty else.

There's more to just weather than it being fine or raining.

So many paddock or field day conversations start off with the familiar: "Had any rain out your way?"

For many parts of the country currently, the reply would be a grim "no". For others, it's an awkward "too much".

There was once a bloke who would walk away from a conversation if it turned to the weather as he couldn't stand the blandness of the topic.

So weather doesn't always make for riveting conversation but there's a bigger picture here.

It's about communication, something those in agriculture probably don't do all that well.  

But communication is recognised as one of the most important things in combating health concerns, like depression. 

It helps to verbally express what you're feeling or describe what's going on.

That's a bridge too far for many farmers, so perhaps we need to bring the bridge a little closer to home.

Some would dismiss the value in talking rainfall totals, drought resistance measures and whether it's hot or cold.

Talking weather is safe ground. It's not likely to offend or create debate (unless climate change is broached) so maybe there's a purpose in that.

Creating safe ground establishes a rapport, maybe only for a few moments but it's an opening.

If weather was taken out of the equation when it comes to "having a yarn" then about 80 per cent of verbal communications in regional, remote and rural Australia would dry up (excuse the pun).

Ever since the Bureau of Meteorology launched its website with access to all manner of graphs, charts, figures, totals and forecasts, every second person has become a backyard meteorologist.

That just adds to the depth of conversations to be had.

What used to be, and still is in many parts, a casual chinwag over clouds and winds, can now become a huddled group hovering around someone's smart phone as they analyse which way blue bands of rain are heading.

The weather affects us all; the sun rises on the evil and the good, the rain is sent on the just and unjust.

Discussing it gives a sense of unity, acknowledging the fact we're all in this together.

Taking a moment to talk things weather might just be enough to roll some dark clouds away from someone's day.  

Weather or Not

SPEAKING of weather, don't forget to check the Good Fruit & Vegetables Facebook page every Friday morning for bush scribe, The Ringer's weekly, tongue-in-cheek weather report, called “Weather or Not”. There’s a moderate chance of a laugh.

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