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At certain times, we become experts about topics which might not normally be so relevant. For example, you can hear people talking about the triple axle and whether a six was truly deserved during the Winter Olympics.  Then, there was the talk about the relationship between stress and gray hair.  Was the president dying his hair? 

As you may recall, I only half-heartedly follow the weather reports.  I had heard that it was going to be cold last weekend and that there was a possibility of snow, but I did not take it too seriously. Snow in October – nah!  Anyway, Friday night as I was walking home from synagogue, my friend told me they are predicting 2-4 inches tomorrow. I was shocked, “Really?”  I figured the earlier reports were just talk – snow in October?  So, I did not believe this storm would happen until the snow was actually falling.  Hey, it was snowing in October. Even then, I figured it was just a passing fluke. Sunday would be warmer, the snow would melt, and we would all busy about on our ways.

I was wrong – very wrong.  The snow came, and even more dramatically, tree limbs came down and power was lost (we did not lose power ourselves, just a flicker or two, but people all around us were not so lucky).  It took me a little while to realize the severity of this plague. Ultimately, it made me curious: Why did this minor snow event cause so much damage – more so, in my area at least, than Hurricane Irene?  Well, I did not have to look far, or even to Google, to get my answer. My friend, who lost power, explained that he had heard the reason why so many limbs broke is because the trees still had leaves on their branches and this weight combined with the heavy snow was the reason behind the massive amount of downed tree parts. I thanked him, always happy to receive new information, and hung up quickly to conserve his cell phone battery.

Over the course of two days, 5 more people conveyed the information to me about the weighty leaves. I tried to appreciate all of them for sharing.  Ultimately, I engaged them in conversation about the weight of leaves and the damage caused. When do you think that conversation will come up again?  Maybe tomorrow, we can all talk about quick celebrity marriages and divorces…

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