My First Tropical Storm

The sticky air dropped, and as I squatted on the pavement finishing off a salad sandwich, the leaves around me began to whisper, which built to a crescendo that tickled the hairs on my neck. Pedestrians doubled their stride, a gust rushed through the gap in the buildings, and then the sky split open like an egg. 

I scrambled up the muddy path for shelter and hid under a 2-foot concrete overhang. Within seconds it was drumming and wailing like a samba band, I crouched wide-eyed and wide-mouthed in the storm. Although the rain could barely get me, it was like being tossed at sea in a metal hold, clattering and banging, whistling and screaming. 

Vague thoughts of the need to get properly inside with a bag full of books and a laptop, but that would take a good 60m and a steep climb down. Yet no hope of waiting it out. The clouds grew darker with almost the speed of an eclipse, it would rain for hours. I gathered my wits like a jailbreak, then a mad, grinning, sliding dash to the canteen, where I arrived dripping from head-to-toe, too much adrenalin to hold the coffee mug straight. 

Thunder to dwarf anything I’ve heard in wet northwestern europe, splice-thin lightning, before eventually it pattered into nothing. The locals didn’t pat an eyelid, I suppose they’ve seen it so many times before. This was nothing.

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