Friday, 8 June 2007

these are a few of my favourite things


The sky is grey and pregnant with rain. From underneath the electrically-lit awning of the train station, which itself is pouring out light from two twenty-five bulb chandeliers, it seems like a premature dusk on this late spring evening.

It's June 8th, 6.30 PM.

Whereas on previous days hardly anyone wore anything but shirts or t-shirts, the same public transport commuters have today had to gamble on wearing a coat or getting wet.

The anticipation is growing, there's a nervous energy in the air. People hang around the station entrance and only venture out to their chosen departure bays when they see the bus pulling up. That way, if it does start to rain, they won't be caught in the gloriously insufficient shelters.

The first drops are falling. Like separate entities, feet apart from each other, each with its own identity and trajectory. The huddle under the awning swells. My buss arrives and I walk towards it at a leisurely pace. Three, maybe four droplets catch me, the one that lands on my right bicep must have come in at an angle.

The bus has tinted glass, adding to the already eerie greenish glow of the outside world. Did I see a flash? I hear no thunder. People outside using umbrellas, no drops on our windows. O, but now there are.

The air is completely still, but for the droplets hurtling down from the grey clouds above, picking up speed and moisture as they fall. My stop is coming up. That was lightning. As I step out, I hear the thunder. The electrical storm is still a distance out, to the west I think. There are large drops on the paving stones, maybe fifteen or twenty per square foot, I can also feel they are sizeable as they hit me, but it's only a short walk home.

Ahead of me I see three electrical discharges in short succession. The middle one is very bright and its thunderclap loudly announces the heart of the storm is still about 1.5 miles away. The rain is picking up.

Home just in time.

2 comments:

BigAssBelle said...

wow! what a beautiful piece of writing. i felt as if i were right there with you. i love lightning and rain storms as well, especially if i can be home "just in time." marvelous.

SubtleKnife said...

Thank you, that's very nice of you to say. I just felt inspired. Thunder and lightning mean so much more to me than a sunny day. Sunny days are whitebread, thunderstorms are exciting and always new, like the strange fruit this sandwich place next to my office building puts in its fruit salad.

Although that actually turned out to be pretty bland: my colleague and I both specifically asked for a slice of that strange white fruit (it had tiny black pips) but it turned out to be a disappointment because it apparently has no taste of its own, but rather takes on the flavours of anything else it is in contact with. My segment was strawberry and melon-flavoured.