Posted tagged ‘rain storm’

“No rain but thunder, and the sound of giants.”

August 19, 2017

Last night we had the best rainstorm complete with thunder right over my house and lightning bolts striking in the sky above my backyard. One clap of thunder made Gracie and me jump as it was both unexpected and close. The rain pelted the roof and windows. It was so loud I had to turn up the sound on the TV. At one point, around 10:30, the rain stopped so I raced to take Gracie outside. The rain started again only minutes after we had gotten back inside. The drops were so heavy and loud they were the only sounds I could hear. I figured it was serendipity the rain stopped for just that small while. Gracie lasted the rest of the night and into the morning.

I’ve nothing on my to-do list for today. The roads will be filled as Saturday is turn-over day at cottages, and tourists will be looking for something to keep kids busy on a dark day, on a no beach day. Board games can only work for so long.

The remnants of the storm are a gray sky and high humidity, the sort of humidity my father used to say you can cut with a knife. The small breeze does nothing to change the close, damp air. We won’t see the sun until tomorrow.

I remember when I was a kid and the thunder and lightning kept me inside. I’d take a book and find a quiet place to read. Sometimes it was in my room because everyone else was downstairs watching TV. It was dark enough I needed a light to read by, the light on the headboard behind me. It seemed to shine only on me and the pages of my book. I felt safe and cozy.

Thunder never scared me even when I was a kid. I remember being told thunder was angels bowling in heaven. I also remember reading Rip Van Winkle’s thunder was the men in the mountains, Henry Hudson’s crew, playing nine-pins. Either way, it was just bowling.

I love lightning, jagged and bright in the sky. One lightning bolt hit the ground right in front of my house in Ghana. It was magnificent. I’ve never seen the like.

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”

November 18, 2014

Last night it poured and peals of thunder and bolts of lightning added drama. The thunder rumbled at first then kept getting closer until one cracked overhead and rattled the house, but that was the final act, thunder’s last hurrah. After that, the rain fell for a bit then it too disappeared. Today is colder than yesterday and will get colder still. Tonight will be in the low 20’s. It’s time to pull out the flannels.

Gracie is nine today. She is celebrating her birthday with a nap on the couch and some loud snoring. Tonight she’ll have a hamburger, no ketchup but maybe some cheese.

It is so quiet around here. No cars pass down the street, the kids are in school and for once no dogs are barking back and forth. The wind is strong but it is a quiet wind with no whooshing, no train sounds like the heavy winds bring. The trunks of the trees are steady and only their leaves are blowing.

I loved walking home from school and watching the wind blow the leaves on the sidewalk. Sometimes the leaves blew in a small whirling pool, an eddy of yellow. I’d always stop to watch. It was a bit of magic as if a magician had pointed his wand and told the leaves to dance.

The fall is passing so very quickly. Crisp days are turning cold. Not long ago the leaves were ablaze with color. Brown is now their only color. Yesterday I was sitting on the deck on a very cold wooden chair waiting for the red spawn to return. As I sat there, I saw single brown leaves falling slowly to the ground from one tree and another then another. The leaves fluttered the way snowflakes sometimes do. I watched a while until I got too cold. The spawn didn’t return, but I didn’t care. I got to watch the leaves.

“Once the rain starts falling it’s hard to tell it to stop…”

June 3, 2013

Last night it was a mighty storm. I saw the lightning then came the thunder, booming thunder getting closer and closer until it was over my house shaking the rafters. I fell asleep to that rain, but it was gone when I woke up. In its place was a dark, quiet day, the sort you sometimes get after a storm when all the sounds had been used up by the rain. Right now, though, the rain has started again, and I can hear the drops falling steadily on the trees and the deck. It will be around all day into tonight. The sun will be back tomorrow.

The rain makes me want to do little or nothing today, but my mood is neither lethargic nor somber. It is from the quiet and the darkness. Rain muffles all sounds except its own. My room is dark lit only by the computer screen. The window is wide open, and I have heard the progression of the rain. It started with a few small drops but is now the heaviest of rains. I have no gutters on my house so nearest the windows the rain falls in a sheet from the roof. No shopping for plants today, no planting flowers today.

Gracie is asleep in her crate. Fern is asleep on my bed and Maddie is in here with me sleeping on her chair. Animals know how to be cozy on a rainy day.

When I think of Ghana, I remember the smells and colors. My favorite of all is the aroma of wood charcoal burning. In my mind’s eye, I can still see smoke rising from the compounds behind my house when small charcoal burners were lit in the early mornings. My own burner was small and held only a single pan. First the charcoal was started. Thomas cooked for me and he’d squat in front of the burner fanning with a reed fan. When it was time for breakfast, he’d first boil the water for my coffee, my instant coffee, then the eggs and bread were cooked at the same time. The bread was leaned against the side to make toast. The eggs were cooked in groundnut oil, peanut oil, which gave them the best flavor of any eggs. I think breakfast was my favorite meal.

When I bought my first grill for this house, I never bought briquets; instead, I always bought wood charcoal. I used to sit outside on my little farmer’s deck not only to mind the grill but also to smell that charcoal burning and to remember and relive in a small way those mornings in Ghana.


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