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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Rumble of Thunder

On Thursday we had a thunderstorm here on the western slopes of the Cascade Mountains.  It lasted about 17 minutes.  Friends later reported seeing the lightning... I've always hated thunderstorms...I spent many nights back home hiding out in someone's basement fearing the lightning and potential tornadoes that can come with spring storms in the Midwest.  One of the reasons I stayed here was that, although it rains often in western Washington, it's nearly always a quiet and gentle rain.  It was late in the work day, and I was surprised to hear the rumble and only left my computer to verify it when the wind hit my office window so hard that I swear I felt the glass move.  With the wind came a hard rain that blew in sideways - much like a Missouri rain storm.  Small, soft hailstones slid down the window and melted away before my eyes.  At first I wasn't able to see the cottonwoods down by the river for the rain, but almost immediately the rain started to slack off, and I watched the treetops whip wildly around...this did not look like a typical rain. 
I quickly saved my work on the computer and grabbed my coat and keys, thinking to get home before the storm got worse.  Crossing the parking lot, I evaded most of the puddles and streams of water running down the slope of the parking lot.  It was necessary to actually turn the wipers on, not just set them to occasionally swipe the windshield.
At the stoplight I had to lower my window to verify that it was safe to turn left on the green light, it was raining so hard. I was so glad I'd not walked to work as I often do!   It's a mile and a half from my door to the office - a bit further by going down to the highway, but not by I approached my turn back up hill, I saw sunbeams cutting through the darkest of the clouds on the southern end of the squall...the rain stopped as suddenly as it had started, the wind stilled, the trees quieted.  By the time I'd parked in the garage and walked up the stairs to my rooms the storm was gone.  The cat was relaxing in a puddle of sunlight that warmed the corner of the bed. 
I'm so thankful to be here where even the thunderstorms don't last long enough to put me into a panic...I hope that my friends and family back in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Kansas  will be so lucky this year.

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My Favorite Fiction Authors and Books

  • Suzanne Arruda- the Jade del Cameron mysteries: "The Mark of the Lion" "Stalking Ivory", "The Serpent's Daughter", "The Leopard's Prey" and "The Golden Cheetah"
  • Ken Goddard - "Balefire" and others
  • Stephen White - the Dr. Alan Gregory books are all great. "Kill Me" is my favorite.
  • Harlan Coben - anything he writes is great
  • Elizabeth Peters - Amelia Peabody mysteries

My Favorite Nonfiction Authors and Books

  • "Coyote's Guide to Connecting With Nature" by Jon Young, Ellen Haas and Evan McGown- 2nd edition coming soon!
  • Gavin De Becker - "The Gift of Fear"
  • "Deep Survival" by Laurence Gonzales- the best survival book I've ever read! Not a how-to, its more of a who does,and why.
  • Candice Millard - "The River of Doubt -Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey"
  • Anything that starts with "Peterson's Field Guide To..."
  • Tom Brown, Jr. - "The Tracker" and others
  • Mark Elbroch - "Mammal Tracks and Sign" and "Animal Skulls"