It rained yesterday.
Whoop de doo you may say, but this is Perth, Western Australia; it hasn’t rained in over two months. To say the ground is extremely parched on this side of the country would be an understatement akin to that of a politician’s public declaration of expenditure.
We needed that rain.
The only problem with rain over here though is that it doesn’t travel alone. Hell no. Usually when you think of a nice spot of drought breaking drizzle you imagine a consistent downpouring that joyous families and farmers can dance about in while singing the praises of Mother Nature’s mercy.
Then there’s Western Australia.
The only reason you would go outside during rain around here is if you have a death wish and desired to depart this mortal coil looking like an escapee from a crematorium.
Not only does Australia have some extremely hazardous wildlife but the weather is also pretty impressive and all. For example, lightning strikes cause between 5 – 10 deaths per year, the leading cause of weather related death short of flooding....also rain related obviously.*
Then with tales of hailstones larger than golf balls, sizeable cyclones and nifty flash flooding, it reoccurred to me that perhaps I was underestimating Australia’s ability to do me in. The things you do for love. But what is it with this country and its complete inability to keep shit normal?
Case in point, I was riding in the car with the Kevman during the aforementioned rain yesterday when I got to witness some of this lightning business in action. Instead of a completely cloudy sky however, it was blue in two thirds of it and a smoggy looking black hell in the other bit. We could see sheets of rain coming down (including the odd bolt of lightning) even though we were driving in sunshine.
But what really tripped my breaker was the fact that you could see through said sheets of black rain to white fluffy clouds and blue sky on the other side! I shit you not, a transparent storm. If I were a religious person, I would say God was horribly miffed that day, but only at a small section of the population. Maybe they weren't doing their craft work I dunno (Those who have read my previous blogs will extract the full humour from that....see, your devoted readership has its perks).
I was stupefied at the ability of this weather system to be so selective. In Feilding, New Zealand where I come from, it just gets cloudy, pisses down with rain then looks like arse for the rest of the day. None of this fancy shmancy shit. I’ve heard of four seasons in one day but not the ability to have them all at bloody once.
That’s just showing off.
Upon further investigation it appears this storm caused power outages and produced some spectacular illumination that made the Australia Day fireworks a few nights previous look like light sticks being waved at a toddler’s birthday party.
(I can hear Mother Nature now: “Oh how pretty, but that’s not a light show...THIS is a light show.”)
(Link to full article here: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-01-29/perth-lightning-storm-cuts-power-to-thousands/6054080)
And of course, where there’s lightening, there is always thunder. And yesterday was no exception. Whilst ambling about the supermarket in a rather large mall I heard a thunderous (literally) noise that made me clutch my trolley for dear life anticipating the need to take shelter behind the canned tomatoes. After a few more high decibelled booms reverberated around the cavernous building I glanced at The Kevman with furrowed brow to which he blithely replied: “Must be a bit of a storm coming”.
Bit of a storm coming? Bit of a f**king storm coming?? No shit Sherlock. Upon returning to our car I half expected to encounter a gaping crevasse in the parking lot.
And this performance continued into the night. As if the blinding flash of 5 billion joules of energy isn't enough to wake you from your bissful slumber, there’s always the accompanying cacophony of booms and crashes to remind you that Mother Nature’s alive and well and possibly pre-menstrual.
It’s almost as if she’s picking a fight: “Why are you sleeping?? I’m not sleeping? You haven’t contemplated life’s vicissitudes nearly enough yet. There are things to be fretted about don’t you know. Think of the poor people in Gaza and war-torn Africa, this is what it sounds like.”
“BOOM, crash, rumble, bam”
But then the rain comes and hangs out for a bit and tranquillity is restored. You close your eyes in anticipation of sweet repose and then...
*BOOM* another wallop.
“Were you SLEEPING again?! Stop being silly!”
“How the hell can I sleep you bi-polar tart when you keep stacking on this performance?”
You close one eye. 20 mins later you have the apparent audacity to close the other. Waste of time if ever there was one.
You know that delightful tale about counting the seconds between the lightning and thunder to gauge how far away the storm is?
There was nothing to count.
*ZAP, CRASH* all in one hearty dose. She was playin’ hardball now (though it sounded more like ten-pin bloody bowling). The sky illuminated like it was bathed in a nuclear blast and the noise was like something out of a surround sound space battle.
In my head I bellowed: “Knock it off!!” But in reality I remained silent as my beloved even stirred at the most recent effort.
And then promptly fell back to sleep.
I swear to God that man could sleep through a death metal concert.
I eventually got some sleep and if I'm honest it wasn't too bad. Our cracked dirt needs more rain so I guess we should keep to coming, thunderstorms and all.
Though apparently the weather forecast for today is 38°C (100.4°F) and stormy. So basically I get to sweat profusely but can’t go stand in the rain to wash it off.
See you next week dear readers! We'll probably have had a cyclone, three hailstorms and a flash flood by then so there'll no doubt be plenty to talk about.
* I do not feel that this takes into consideration deaths from heat exposure as there are government reports indicating death from heat to be the biggest killer in Australia. Due to lack of specific study in the area, however, clear data is not available.....but you can bet your ass it’ll be examined in a future blog.