Saturday, April 24, 2010

Thunderbolts and lightening

The first of what will be many thunderstorms as the season progresses through Spring and into Summer moved through the area last night with a lot of rain and is displaying itself in grand fashion this morning with thunder and lightening.

Thunderstorms with lightening were so rare in the coastal area of southern California where I grew up, that I can remember my Dad taking me outside under the carport during one when I was a small child to listen to the thunder and watch the lightening flash across the sky. In retrospect, it was probably a very smart thing for him to have done. It was one less thing to be terrified of.

As I grew older, I can remember laying in bed at night before falling asleep, hearing the jets taking off from LA International Airport, and because of the Cold War indoctrination I received in elementary school, I could imagine these were Soviet jets coming to drop a bomb on us. You see, in addition to the routine earthquake drills and fire drills, we also did the "duck and cover" in case of an atom bomb attack.

Lightening does worry me a bit - there was a flash and crack of thunder not too far away -  and I may end up having to shut down my computer before too long  (Richard yells from the kitchen: I guess I won't be taking my walk this morning!). Lightening is dangerous and inconvenient when we have to sit without power for hours because of a lightening strike somewhere in the power grid

We have never had a direct hit to our house or lost any of our appliances - possibly because there are many trees around our house that are much taller than the house to draw it away. But, the lightening routinely strikes the ground, and the travels doing damage along the way. Our well pump was hit twice. Once the entire thing had to be replaced, and another time just the controller was damaged.

And the trees on our property have taken a few hits...

 but they have survived.

1 comment:

Oklahoma Granny said...

We were supposed to get some nasty weather Friday but it didn't happen.

When we lived in town we had a transformer in our back yard. In the 20 years we lived there I don't know how many times that thing was struck by lightening.