How’s the Weather?… Identity in a Time of Crisis (Pt.1)

Princella Talley
4 min readJun 1, 2022
Photo by Nick Scheerbart on Unsplash

Talks about the weather or, more specifically, climate change often become conversations about worsening patterns and politics. Less discussed are the personal perceptions of weather, perceptions formed by culture and the memories that shape “identity.” While identity politics can play a role in climate conversations, the politics pale in comparison to emotional and spiritual connections to nature.

It was nature, the breeze after a hard rain that doubled as the air conditioner in the old house I called home as a child. Summer days became the loudest as the humming of fans circulated the air, perfecting the temperature in the right moments. I could hear those fans making music with the insects and trees in the evenings as I baked mud pies in the front yard.

The weather wasn’t rooted in climate science. There were no numbers, no statistics. There were hot days in houses with poor insulation and lively conversations set against the backdrop of rusting blades that manipulated the air with intention — intention to balance the heat.

Intention kept my family moving forward in used, and mostly unreliable, cars that collected countless stories between their windows. My mom and grandmother would exchange words about church and shopping as songs about the grace of God played on the radio.