Monday, April 24, 2006


Tonight, after work, I walked home as I always do--but this time, something was different. As I crossed the street and headed past our local Café de France, I noticed a large raindrop as it landed, *plop*, right in the middle of my page.

(Explanation: I read my book while I walk down the street, especially in my own neighborhood. I use my peripheral vision to watch out for crottes and people. I hate wasting time, I hate putting my book down when I'm "in a good part", and I also dislike dealing with the multitude of people who a. beg for money or b. beg for money for their charity. Not that I have anything against charity. It's just that they try every single day, and I get rather tired of it.)

A greenish light was in the west, and the clouds were heavy and low. As I prepared our dinner, from the open window I heard the unmistakeable sound of thunder.

Thunder. In Paris.

In other words, Yes, this is the real world.

It's easy, when you live in Paris, to consider yourself living in a bubble. Everything is different here. The architecture, the history, the language, the culture, the food, the people. Even the weather.

Back home in the Midwest (what some would call the "Great Plains"), we had weather. We had the kind of weather that "kept the riff-raff out." We knew that Mother Nature could and did wreak havoc, and could (and unfortunately did) take lives. We knew cold. Cold that froze your snot inside your nose cold. We knew rain. Rain that pulled the contact lenses out of your eyes (yes this happened to me once so don't tell me I'm exaggerating!) We had tornadoes, and thunderstorms, and lightening strikes. We had floods and droughts and blizzards. And we were tough. We could take it.

My Grandpa says thunderstorms are God's fireworks. During rainstorms, he'd stand in the window with all the lights out, and watch the lightening crack across the sky.

I guess He's reminding me that He's still there. Watching.

And now, after the rain, there is a fresh, clean, sort of electric feeling. Like something could happen, really happen.


I wonder if I'm ready.



At 7:10 PM, April 24, 2006, Anonymous Nikki said...

whoa - I just opened your blog in IE - it worked!!!

I should send you a link to pictures from our tornado in Iowa City the other week. (10 days ago) It's 4 miles south of me - 1 person was killed (lived in mobile home) and a couple dozen injured - but quite a few houses, apartments, businesses and a 100 year old church were devastated.

We were safe - just had hail for 1/2 hour.

At 9:12 PM, April 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for returning "Flat Stanley" and his diary. The 2nd graders at St. Joes will enjoy his journey immensely! Now he will get to hang out here in the Great Plains and experience real thunderstorms: the kind that make young kids run for cover in their parents bed, and stay up for hours hiding under their covers and giggling. Not that my children would ever do that! Your cuz in ND

At 5:20 AM, April 25, 2006, Blogger PutYourFlareOn said...

I hardly noticed it rained yesterday, Julien was freaking out because he doesn't like the rain. I'm used to HUGE midwestern thunderstorms, the ones you can smell before they happen and if you don't park your car on the street because you never know what's going to come flowing down the mini river that was once your street. Ah, I miss thunderstorms like that... I hear it was stronger in Paris than where we are... tant mieux, we're on vacation!! Maybe that rain cleaned off a few weeks of doggie poo.

At 7:47 AM, April 25, 2006, Blogger Kat said...

beautiful post, Mrs. B.


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