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5.29.2012

Reading by Flashlight

What a tale of two weekends...

Saturday broke hot and sticky. The humidity was up, the sun scorching, and there was a palpable quality of mayhem building in the atmosphere. Things definitely intensify in the hours before a big storm. The humidity spikes, then plummets (seemingly without reasoning); the wind billows hard and fast for a minute, then every tree in the area becomes perfectly still; you can smell the storm clouds as they bunch up overhead, then the sky absolutely fractures with lightning.

On Saturday, Lyla and I went to the pool while Jeanne worked on graduation preparations at the high school. I hit the golf course at 5:30 (shot a personal best 82, which has been a long time coming, let me tell you!) and watched all of the above happen. I got back inside just ahead of the first bands of wind from Tropical Storm Beryl

Sheesh, the wind whipped pretty hard, and a lot of trees went down while the lightning put on a show. We brought Lyla into our room to sleep with us. I was enjoying a book when, around 10:00, the lights flickered. They did it a few more times and then died for good twenty minutes later, not to return until the following afternoon. I read for an hour with a flashlight, like I used to when I was a kid back in John Day, Oregon.

It was nice, for a short time.

We saved our fridge full of groceries with ice from Winn Dixie (had things gone south more quickly, it would have been the second time in less than a year that we lost a full icebox), and we had a nice morning without any electricity.

Still, there's something about Florida humidity in May that makes a person long for air conditioning. It's fine if you choose to be outside in it (which I often do), but it's kind of insufferable to be sitting indoors and just feeling sticky all day.

We had some branches come down in the yard, but no damage. JEA got the power turned on, and it's been fine since then (as I write this, it's about as dark as dusk outside and the rain is pounding down again), though this tropical depression is expected to drop another six inches on us by Friday.

It's funny. We were in drought conditions three weeks ago. All of the ponds in the area were down, and the golf courses were parched. Now, cars are washing away, businesses are flooding, creeks are popping out of their banks and my front yard is washing out into the street.

We've had seven inches of rain in forty-eight hours here in Brookwood Forest. 

Whew. It's nice to get the rain, but as Lyla said, "I miss my Florida sunshine."

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