We’re having storms out here near the coast, and it reminds me of a time, about three years ago, when I was on a vacation to the Outer Banks with my family and we stayed in a rented home right on the water. Like right on it–the house was on stilts and everything.
The shore leading up to this house was also quite odd. A very steep bank with strong currents and lots of sand bars. I never walked very far into it.
But there was this other family staying there and they were playing on the beach, of which there was very little of, on this particular day, because the ocean was high tide. And a storm was a’brewin.
Anyhow, we watched as these girls of the family in the rental next to us were outside as the lightning started to strike in the distance. Little flicks of it and flashes, like a matchbox toy.
But, as the lightning started getting closer, still, they stood out there in their bikinis dancing around, the boys came outside to join–even daring the lightning to strike! They were placing bets or something, maybe. I’m not sure.
But, these little matchbox strikes did not stay so small, and those little slivers of light started to become vengeful veins of God’s electric wrath. Eventually, they ran inside, I guess, because none of them died; but I was, of course, leaning my forehead against the window, as any idiot would do in a lightning storm on the coast, and watched those powerful bolts and felt the thunder that shook the ground and I was so humbly in awe and watched in complete fascination, while everyone else was watching the crazy family playing electric roulette.
My mom eventually came over to a window nearby the one I was looking out from, when the storm really started to place its heavenly bets. And we watched those veins of fire crawl closer and closer and grow bigger and thicker. Until it pumped with otherworldly power only houses down from where we stayed. Twelve houses, six houses, three houses, the neighbor’s house (not the crazy neighbors). And then it danced on the water and on the beach and we were awed.
BOOM!!! I leapt away from the window as an arm of God pelted a burrow into the sand just feet from the little tree stilts that our rental swayed upon. A sliver of it touched the window, I swear. The house shook, alarms went off. We thought it had started a fire on the siding of the house as it struck the electrical box. The TV shut off and phones started beeping and making tones. The thunder was instantaneous as I had watched that keyhole into the above nearly graze my cheek at the window. And I was near deaf for quite a few hours.
I’m not sure how quickly I had truly jumped, but I was twelve feet away from that window by the time I had my bearings. That was the loudest kaboom of thunder I’d ever witnessed. And every other kaboom has been disappointing since.
…Just kidding. Every other kaboom has been very comforting since. Stay a few miles off and I will listen to the grumbles of the angels, but touch my cheek and I might be in heaven.
What an experience that was! I’ve been wiser with windows in thunderstorms ever since.
Steering back to the present, however, I was contemplating something. You know how people count the seconds after a flash and it’s nearly equal to the number of miles it was away?
I was watching the lightning and listening to the thunder just a few minutes ago and I saw a most powerful flash, but I counted and counted and counted, and finally, I reached twelve long seconds. It was nearly 14 miles away and that kaboom was something else, let me tell you. And then I realized. …fourteen miles is about a twenty-minute drive. That bad boy’s squabble in the sky was heard from a twenty minute car ride away.
And that just blew my socks off. Also a little disappointed that I was today years old when I realized that to piece it together.
I want to admit, I did at first amaze myself by thinking “Fourteen miles?! Oh my gosh, that’s 40 minutes away!!” And that was a lot more impressive, but I was wrong. So now twenty minutes seems much less glorious, But it is still something to really behold!
I hope y’all enjoyed my adventures with lightning storms today, and my today-years-old revelation. I hope you were younger years old when you got to be awed by that. 😜 I also hope you never way over-shot the time it takes to travel the distance of 14 miles to majorly disappoint yourself that you can’t particularly hear devil’s hell-worthy kabooms of thunder from fourty minute car-rides away.
Enjoy your evening and stay dry, and try not to dance in thunderstorms when veins of God are reaching out of the sky with shocking and heavenly power. Because you will be… shocked by the terror it will strike in you.
Signing off for now, but still working on your favorite series (which has 269 pages of engaging adventure for you to sit on the edge of your seat for),
Also, I wish the photo was mine, but it is not. It is taken by (and used with the courtesy of): Philippe Donn via Pexels free images.