Today is Memorial Day in the United States. That's a day when we're supposed to honor people who served in the military, but mostly we have cook outs and sales in stores.
I slept in (for me) and got up to read the newspaper on the front porch. Then I dressed for my morning run. The wind had picked up a little by then and the leaves were whispering as if they were already falling raindrops. I shook Earl awake and asked if he'd put the top up on the convertible. It's a two-person job now that the motor has burned out on the convertible top. He said he had and rolled over to go back to sleep.
I headed out into the humid morning to enjoy the breezes sweeping along. I'd run more than a mile and a half before the first raindrops struck me. I'd been hearing a sound that could have been far away thunder or might have been an airplane or loud truck. Who was I to judge?
I was just coming out of a cul de sac that I run for an extra half mile when the sky opened and the rain fell in torrents. Still, a little rain is no big deal. I'd worn my running cap and it kept the rain off my face.
Then from behind me, a loud boom made me jump. The thunder, followed by a streak of lightning, was so loud and close that it set off car alarms. I paused, wondering what to do. Should I move onto the sidewalk and stay under the trees? I know, I know, I should never stand under a tree during a thunder storm, but I didn't want to run in the middle of the road away from the trees either.
There were a couple of friends' houses not too far away. The one who was closest would still be asleep. The other was three blocks away, and she might be awake. If not, she had a large front porch that could shelter me.
I started to sprint (for me) running hard down the sidewalk. The safety of my friend's porch was within three blocks. After two blocks of sprinting, I could feel my heart pounding. I was going to have to slow down or walk, I thought. Another bolt of lightning followed by booming thunder urged me to keep going. And I thought about the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire movie I'd watched the night before when he was ready to give up underwater and gave one last blast to pull himself to the surface. "Ascendio!" I shouted in my head and I made my legs keep pumping.
I reached the porch and peered in the doorway. Anne had just gotten up. Wearing a pink sleep shirt, she let me in and gave me a towel.
I was still about a mile from home. My slumbering husband was rousted from bed to fetch me, and he grumbled about it all the way home through the standing water on the road and the claps of thunder above.
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