Monday, August 15, 2005

The Rains Came Down

And the floods came up. Anyone else know that song?

We had some really cool thunderstorms in NYC last night! With big lightening and cracks of thunder loud enough to make car alarms go off on Riverside Drive. If it hadn’t been so damn hot outside, I’d have turned off the A/C and opened the windows to listen to it. (Alas, it was bloody hot here all weekend, miserably so. The thunderstorms were riding piggy-back on a cold front, so we got a slight reprieve from the suffocating temperatures, but not enough to warrant turning off the A/C for even a few minutes.) It was just fun to watch out the window! I know there was flooding and loss of power in other parts of the city and in NJ, but we were just fine.

It made me miss Texas, where storms like these are a regular occurrence and always take me back to my childhood. We had GREAT storms out in West Texas! The power would most likely go out (due to our location 5 miles outside of town) because the wind knocked a tree branch into the power line and boom, no more electricity for our half of the county! So we’d all scramble around in the glow of the electric storm outside looking for candles and matches and flashlights (almost none of which actually had batteries) and the oil lamp we kept for just such an occasion. My parents house has crank-open windows and one was always open somewhere (more than likely there were a lot open, as the big thunderstorms happen in the spring and fall when it’s not so hot and there’s a nice breeze to cool the house), so we’d also scramble around the entire house to shut all the windows before the deluge of rain hit. My brother and sister and I were never frightened by the storm, it was always somehow thrilling to all of us. Out where we lived, you could see it approaching for miles, and I think the fact that we could see it for miles away and knew it was coming even before darkness set in that kept us from being frightened when it actually arrived. If the storm was really bad, we’d be pulled from our beds to go down the road to the neighbors’ or into town to my grandparents’ to escape to the basement. We didn’t have one. I liked to stand up above ground at the garage entrance with the men to listen for the fire-house siren (warning people of the approaching tornado) and to watch the rain come down in sheets. To this day, I still love sitting and watching the rain. Listening to it. It calms me.

The only dangerous thing about the storm yesterday was the flooding in spots and the lightening strikes. I’ll bet the Empire State Building got struck a few times. And when it rains that hard, the subway floods (which is not a good place to be anyway, as they are run off electricity and that’s bad in the rain!) and the trains just don’t run. But, as we had no where to go, we just sat and watched the rain. The perfect thing to do on a lazy Sunday afternoon.


Timmie Smith said...

The rains came down and the floods came up, and the wise man's house stood firm... one of the great songs of vacation bible school.

Being able to watch the storms come in is one of the things I miss most about West Texas. We've still got the storms here in College Station, but I can't sit out and watch the lightening as it comes into town. Too many trees and buildings for that. I can't imagine what the situation in New York City must be like... really not able to see anything coming there.

When we went home for the Fourth of July a storm came in and I laughed about how we haven't changed. Everyone scambled to get cars parked in the garage and barn before the hail started, which is easier now that we can all drive. Then we dropped the tailgate on a pickup in the garage and watched it pour. Since my folks live far enough out of town to not be able to hear the sirens, and since growing up in Lazbuddie we didn't have sirens, one of us would get up every couple of minutes and walk to check the tv and look out the other windows to check for tornado activity. Great family time in the garage.

Mollina said...

The wise man built his house on the rocks.... ah, those good old VBS days with Mama teaching us songs and the motions to go along. Does anyone else in the world do VBS like we do in West Texas? Hmmmm....

I remember standing in the Henard's living room, watching out the window (b/c they wouldn't let us outside) to see if we could see the tornados forming.

I'm with you, Katers. Nothing calms me like the sight and the sound of rain. Sometimes I even like standing in it, dancing around. My friends think I'm loopy. Remember parking at OK Tire and dancing in the rain? :)

Kailee said...

I'm procrastinating right now. I've already posted on the new entries on Molly's I just made my way over to yours!

Also a big fan of the West Texas rainstorms. There's nothing like the smell and sound of rain.

I remember sitting on a tailgate under the awning at the OK Tire Store and watching the rain. Heaven forbid I go home before curfew! No, no. I sat and watched the rain with the few people that also ventured out until it was 10:57 and then I went home!