Tuesday, September 4, 2007


When the weather is nice, we always eat outside at the picnic table. We have a lovely view up to the foothills and the entertainment of hummingbirds buzzing and jousting at the feeder. Kitsu and Sachi meander by to say hello before heading off on important cat business. The clouds drift by. The shadows shift on the hillside. I could happily stay at the picnic table until dark.

While I cook dinner, the Engineer does his nightly patrol and changes into after-work clothes (play clothes as my Mom used to call them) then sets the table. Tonight was no exception.

I looked at the sky and said, "It looks pretty dark, maybe we'd better eat inside."

He said, "No, it's going up the canyon, it'll pass us by." To make sure, he ran out to the front of the house and studied the sky. "No worries."

As we carried our plates out, it was growing rapidly even darker. There was a big wind up on the hill, evinced by a great cloud of brown dust hazing the view. Again I suggested that perhaps we should consider eating inside.

"No, it won't rain, we're only getting the edge of it."

So I decided I would see how long he'd last.

The wind picked up. Heck, the wind picked up the deck chair and threw it against the house. The salad dressing bottle blew off the table. Three pickets blew off the fence. The trees thrashed and dropped branches into the pool.

As huge raindrops splatted into us, we carried the picnic table under the overhang between the carport and kitchen door, then continued eating. The rain drops, however large and hard driven, were few and far between. Not even enough rain to knock the dust down. Dinner was getting a little gritty.

We finished dinner before we went back into the house. I carried the light weight things that I'd been holding down back in first. Didn't dare let go of them, they'd have taken flight.

When we watched the news at 9:00, the weather lady reported that wind gusts at the meteorology station about a mile from the house measured 63 miles per hour.


Oh, yeah!

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