Inspired by: Lisa’s post on Simple Pleasures
When I read about Lisa’s simple pleasures, I couldn’t help but think about what I would put on my list. And after I thought about that, I couldn’t help but think how one person’s pleasure can be another person’s nightmare.
One of the things on my list is the sounds and smells associated with storms, especially at night when all the other daytime sounds are quiet. Sitting with a mug of coffee, or snuggled in bed, with the lights and TV turned off, are favorite things to do during a storm.
Most times a storm begins with the wind kicking up its heels. It chases the clouds across the sky, making them shift shapes so fast that there isn’t time to enjoy the art of it. At the speed they are going it is no real surprise when they meet the invisible barricade erected by the “sky-way police”. With the wind from behind and nowhere to go, the clouds cram together, grow in density, and change color from fluffy white cotton balls to a selection of gray, blue and hues of both.
The stronger the wind blows, the harder the trees dance. Branches, stiff from being in an ever stationary position, start to sway lightly. Just a little bit this way, and a little bit that way, adding a little shake to the leafs, then start all over again. It is slow going at first, finding the right rhythm. But then, limbs creaking and popping, the pace is set for a full-blown shake-rattle-roll!
Once in a while, rarely in the Eastern Cape, a deep rumble will sound from Nature’s throat. The sound is strong (sometimes not) enough to cause a quiver in the ground and resonate in your heart. It fills me with awe, respect and that feeling of “I’m alive!”.
The smell, of the first water leaking from the heavy clouds, is the best thing ever. It warns to seek cover, fast, or get wet! The first drops that fall can be light, soft as a feather’s touch. Other times it reminds of stomping feet, heavy and, on occasion, booted. In houses with tiled roofs the pit-pit-pat-tat of raindrops sounds far away. The best place to listen to the rain is under a tin roof or in your car. I find the sound very relaxing and it always triggers my imagination.
On stormy nights, when there are no other sounds to distract me, I can hear some wonderful symphonies. I know there are people who get really uncomfortable, and even scared or terrified, at the sound of the wind moving between buildings and through trees. And some people feel that way about thunder. I’m thankful that I can enjoy them.
Originally published: 08.11.2010