Thursday, December 20, 2018

Weird summer night

Last night could have been from last week’s weird summer day, but it wasn’t. Instead, it had a related but isolated event that was very unusual. The new normal, maybe.

Yesterday was sunny, sometimes cloudy, but never rainy. As the day wore on, I thought that I should go out and water our tomatoes, since it hasn’t rained for a couple days.

As evening descended, rain started falling. I was pleased because I’d rather the garden was watered naturally, and not just because I’m lazy. The rain stopped. Then it started again, a bit heavier. And it stopped. And then started, repeating several times. I thought to myself, “at least it’s giving the tomatoes a soaking, not a gentle misting.” I suppose that was true.

I went to bed early (for me…) because I was extremely tired. I gave all three dogs a bath yesterday—one used to be tiring, two exhausting, and three unimaginable. That probably says a lot about my current state of health. However, I nearly used up our hot water, since I also had to wash myself afterward (washing dogs always means I get soaked).

When Nigel got home, we gave Jake and Sunny their pre-Christmas summer haircuts. Nigel got a folding standing-height table to put them on, and both Sunny and Jake were still damp. Nigel managed to trim them both within a couple hours, where normally it takes a few days with starts and stops.

Nigel attributes this to the fact the dogs were clean and/or damp. In that past, I always washed them after their trim, but Nigel thinks that maybe clean fur cuts easier. The dampness helped keep the cutting blades on the electric trimmer cool, which meant we didn’t have to stop frequently to wait for them to cool down. My job in the haircutting is to hold the customer and talk to them softly and reassuringly, telling them how good they are, and the other usual stuff one says to calm a dog. The only thing left is to trim the fur around their paws, always a challenge because Jake and Sunny both hate their feet being touched at all.

Leo doesn’t need a trim right now, though his eye hairs needed a trim. That’s its own challenge because he does NOT like being shorn in any way. Even so, it’s a small job, and one we’ve mostly accomplished.

I found all that physical work—washing the three dogs, and standing and holding them while they were trimmed—to have been pretty tiring work. I was so tired that I decided to skip blogging and go to bed early (for me…).

Around 2am, I think it was, we both woke up to very heavy rain, then there was a bright flash and one of the loudest thunderclaps I’ve ever heard—but there was only one. There was no more thunder or lightning, and the rain even eased up. I’ve never been in a thunderstorm with only one lightning strike.

The next morning I checked Facebook, as I usually do, and I saw on our local community’s Facebook Page that people around us had immediately posted about it, something that was not at all on my mind at the time. Others chimed in the next morning, before I saw the posts, and it seems everyone was as surprised as we were. Some even thought at first it was a plane crash; we’re across the harbour from Auckland International Airport, and planes fly over us all the time, so this wasn’t a silly a thing to think.

Last night was the night of one single lightning strike somewhere near us. I can’t remember ever witnessing that before, so it made the night weird. Well, that, and the fact I went to be early (for me…). But I was tired, you see.

Related(ish): “Christmas day weather forecast: Heavy rains and gusty winds expected for much of the country, with the South Island looking the best” – from TVNZ’s Breakfast show this morning.

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