When they say “Timing is everything”, they aren’t just yanking your chain. The little tasks and events we encounter and deal with each day collectively serve to alter the short and long term path we take. Whether that be for better or worse we rarely know until the day or the life is done. I was fortunate enough to have some random events lead me into proximity with danger recently and to tell you the truth it actually was pretty cool.
Nothing outstanding about the day, really. Just did the work thing but then stayed late reading the Dope because there were some interesting conversations going on in a couple of threads. It was probably 20 minutes after I could have left before I actually walked out the door. It was raining very hard by this time and I cringed a bit as I traversed the parking lot since I was under large metal carports most of the way that were magnifying the loud belts of thunder.
Pulling onto a four lane that traverses a reservoir, I settled into my drive home by turning on NPR and opening the inner cover to the sunroof.
About a second later the entire sky suddenly lit up and I saw a white hot thunderbolt smack into the guardrail no more than fifty feet ahead and to the right of me. It was only about the distance that you could fling a grape away and caused the post by the rail to explode in a white hot shower of sparks. I cringed expecting to hear the loudest boom of my life. It did make an electric exploding sound but, while very loud, it wasn’t absolutely deafening. Still, you could tell a tremendous amount of energy had just been expended very close to you. Instantly a cloud of smoke came up from the road, either from singed pavement or superheated rainwater.
And then it was gone. Within a half second I’d passed by the point of impact and was looking to make sure none of the drivers around me were spinning out of control from the fright.
Had I left on time I’d never have seen it. Heck, had I left 2 seconds earlier I wouldn’t have seen it. But everything worked out just perfectly that day and I got to see a physical display I’ll not soon forget.
It was, in a word, waycool.