What Do Grimsvotn and Eyjafjallajokull Have in Common Besides Their Cool Names? They Both Demand Respect for Hot Tempers

So, what do you think about this volcano in Iceland?  I believe it’s called the Grimsvotn volcano.

It’s erupting again.  Apparently air travel in Europe is getting dicey as the Grimsvotn ash cloud makes its way toward Scotland.

You might remember something similar from last year when the Eyjafjallajokull volcano erupted, grounding Europe flights for a good long time — something like five days.

Grimsvotn and Eyjafjallajokull teach us something we already know (something besides the fact that Icelanders have incredibly cool names for things).  The power of nature is a force to be reckoned with.  Just look what’s been happening in the Midwest as tornadoes have ripped through cities like Joplin, Missouri.  Over 100 deaths and a line of destruction tells the story.

Humans have the ability to plan.  We take out a credit card, buy some airline tickets, get a rental car, and go about our itineraries.  But nature — weather and other events?  Well, it has a mind of its own.  It can be simply a bummer, such as when a golf game gets rained out, or a downright tragedy, such as the doings in Joplin, the hurricanes that have ravaged the Southeast in the past, or the Japan and Haiti earthquakes.

There are certain things in life that build respect over time, like a person who works though medical school to earn the title “doctor” or someone who fights against amazing odds to accomplish something incredible.

Then, there are things that demand respect right from the off, even before we are old enough to discern the differences in human achievement — things like the weather and nature.  The question is, do we respect it enough?  Gone are the days when a majority of the world’s population makes offerings and sacrifices to appease the gods of nature, although there are certainly indigenous societies for whom this is common practice.

But maybe the point isn’t to appease nature.  Maybe the point is to respect it in all its glory.  Make your golf plans in Scotland, for sure.  Just make sure that you have a healthy respect for something that is indifferent to your game, and can set you on another course altogether.

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