The skies are murky. The heat hangs heavy in the air. The darkness and dampness of a storm a-brewing is ideal for listening to Shovels and Rope. The minor chords and themes of swelling flood waters fill the humid air. Ominous. I know it's too early for the light to have gone.
The first drops fall with what feels like some effort as I listen closely to the lyrics of the next song. I know where it's taking me. I'm transported. This song could be the soundtrack to Chapter 18 of the acclaimed Zora Neale Hurston novel "Their Eyes Were Watching God."
In the novel, Hurston depicts the main characters riding out the great Okeechobee Hurricane of 1928. A real storm, one that cost the lives of thousands, the hurricane dealt out winds of 145mph with a brutal storm surge that caused Lake Okeechobee to spill its guts, flooding the area for miles and washing away homes, cars, cattle and people. The characters in the novel are seen huddling on the floors of shanties on the "muck" of the Everglades. Having waited too long or having been too stubborn to seek higher ground when the time was right, they turn to each other and to higher powers in a desperate attempt at summoning the strength to survive.
Lucky for me, I'm just trying to get dinner on the table.
Unlike the characters from the book, I made all the necessary preparations in advance. 24 hours ago, I mixed up a marinade for the flank steak, covered it and put it in the refrigerator over night. There was a lot of looking in at it, by myself and by others. Questions were asked. Time was taken to turn it over in its dish. It was thought about. It was important. Now that I see that the rains will come, I feel good knowing all I have to do is quickly grill it up and slice it (against the grain, of course.)
We will make it through our hurricane (rain storm) unscathed and satisfied. Come Hell or High Water, with God. Or Beef.