The only alarm that ever could, wake me.
I could sleep (provided I am sleeping) through the most annoying man-made alarm out there.
But give me a good clap of thunder and awake, out of bed, and standing at the wide-open front door I am.
In a flash.
One thing I do not do is waste a good thunderstorm.
Even as we speak, the noise rolls across the sky; it sounds miles away before it fades.
Lightning on its tail.
One, two, three…you know the drill.
I don’t question this fascination and love (yup, love) of the great God of Thunder.
It just is, and always has been.
A family tradition even.
As a teen, I recall being on the front porch with my father and one of my brothers during a storm.
It was e l e c t r i c !!
The porch was long, flat, ground level, and concrete.
The rain was coming so fast the ground could not absorb it fast enough.
The puddles began to form on this electrifying porch, during this electrifying storm.
One sound I recall hearing on that particular evening was a clap so loud I had to cover my ears while I shouted my delight.
The sound that followed was as loud a boom as any you’d hear on the fourth of July.
Drawing not the oohs and ahs of appreciation. No.
But screams, yelps, and moans of the three of us on the porch.
The only thing louder was primal screams as my Mother ran out of the house onto the porch seconds after the sound that woke the devil and the moans that followed.
Some noise came from the direction where my brother had sat in an aluminum lawn chair.
A chair which now lay on its side, empty, in the puddle that had formed under it.
He was now flat on the ground, still shocked.
The other chair’s occupant, my Father, came out of his like his ass was on fire, releasing a sound no one would mistake as an exclamation of happy surprise.
For myself, I danced the dance of the mouse in an electrified cage, as I was standing barefoot in my puddle of what began strictly as rain before I added my own brand of yellow dew drops.
The porch had become my own Skinner Box.
The humming inside my head so loud it’s a wonder I heard anything else at all.
Confused, being pushed and pulled, seemingly in all directions at once, we finally managed to get inside.
A lesson – One for a lifetime.
Go inside, close the windows, pull the shades, hide under the bed during a thunderstorm?
Don’t use aluminum lawn chairs or stand in puddles barefooted on a flat, ground level, concrete porch of course!
Now please excuse while I return to the chair I’ve placed center stage to enjoy the show.
A chair made of wood, on dry ground, INSIDE.