I got caught out in a thunderstorm yesterday. I was about three miles from my house when an ugly, black cloud that followed me (not the metaphorical one - a different one...)away from my house began to start flashing like it was somehow erupting. Then it started raining. And I mean hammering it down. Being in the middle of nowhere - and somewhat cooled down by the rain - I picked up the pace a little. Then the air started feeling very strange. One second it would be very cool only to change quickly to very hot. Everything felt charged too and I could feel the hairs all over my body standing on end.
That's when I noticed a guy on a motorcycle under a tree. Hmmmm. I had my headphones on so a lot of the noise around me was blocked out. It probably didn't help that at that very moment the third song on this Slayer album was chugging along ominously. It was raining so bloody hard that I couldn't really keep my eyes open and my ears were so wet the headphones wouldn't stay in. So I took them out and realized that the very impressive production techniques to that album were in fact the sounds of the sky falling in. The thunder was extremely loud and rumbling - but not particularly local. If you haven't experienced a North American storm then you may not get it. The general loudness of thunder is frighteningly loud. Your spine shakes when it growls seemingly everywhere. But there's a difference between the sound and feel of those bombs going off in the sky and the absolutely monstrous thunder-clap that smashes into the ground like God himself striking the earth. The first one is still scary and vibrates everything. The second one makes you want to hide in the basement.
At which point I made a choice. I could either head into a nearby horse racing track/casino or I could run flat out down the main road and see if I could beat the lightning home before it started twatting everything higher than the ground. I chose the second one figuring that if it really got bad then I'd hide under a bridge on the way home. Obviously I should point out that any plan that has the emergency caveat of "you can hide under bridge if you think you might die" is not a particularly well thought out one. But balls to it - I picked that one. About a mile later I was chugging along pretty hard when I heard that first strike. The roaring int he sky had changed now to include the booming of lightning hitting stuff that apparently annoyed the storm. It wasn't particularly close to me (relatively) but it was evident that the part of the storm that does that sort of thing was very much on it's way. And yes - I've spent many a moment in my house during storms watching and cowering as lightning violently smashed into the ground very close by. As in twenty feet away or so. My five and a half mile run now became a flat out sprint. I'm fairly certain that I never have and likely never will run a mile and a half that quickly ever again. Holy shit I absolutely tanked it home.
Then last night it just got louder and more cataclysmic. It must have been three of four hours of seemingly constant lightning and thunder directly around us. It was so bright the sky looked like a photograph's negative. I tried to watch it out the bedroom window but it was just too bright. My son slept through the whole thing though. My daughter spent the night up with her grandparents. If they had that storm (and they usually have many more than us) there's no way she slept.
Anyhoo - I'm off out to a county fair all day. So as a surprise/fob off you can have these old photos to gawk at.
Here's my daughter's first ever tantrum - this week 4 years ago. She'd never realized that you could actually say No to your parents before. And she'd never felt that overwhelming feeling of primal emotion before either. It overcame her so much that she ended up lying on the floor right where she was possessed by it for half an hour paralyzed by it all.
And this is her up a mountain (Cold Hill to be precise) in the Adirondacks.
And her a few days later, evidently after clubbing a friend's child into submission.
And just to point out now that July is almost over - it's coming. Snow deeper than your car.....