Sunday, August 16, 2015

The Storms of Summer

When the Storms of Summer mean Summer's End

zoom-in on nearby Radda between storms
 Summer's lease may have all too short a date, but this summer has been a whopper, with record temperatures and record lack of rain. We couldn't wait for summer to end.
recent storms have given rise to 'trombe d'aria' or tornadoes such as this, seen off Massa Carrara (courtesy of

And when it did rain it came down like Armageddon. Storms have devastated many parts of Italy and Tuscany has borne its share of atmospheric anger. 
Yesterday we had a storm which wreaked havoc in various parts of the country; luckily at Le Ripe we caught only the fringe of it. And it has been entirely beneficial.

zoom-out on Radda between storms
So our plants are drinking again, their leaves have straightened, they have gone from wilting and depressed to positively perky. And the Great Heat has gone.
Le Ripe after the rain
 Ever since I first spent summers on The Continent (as mainland Europe was quaintly called once upon a time), I was aware that around mid-August a big storm could herald the end of the season.

Radda no longer visible through the rain
When they are not destroying your wireless routers, telephone lines, road surfaces and other material goods, the storms themselves can be exhilarating.
early morning mists concealing Radda after storms
 Yesterday as I breathed in the ozone-laden breeze just before the storm arrived, I thought I caught a whiff of gunpowder. Puzzled, I looked this up. It appears that outer space can smell of gunpowder, as does the surface of the moon: was cosmic dust being blown over Le Ripe?
in the thick of it
Cosmic dust or no, devastation or no, these grey skies, the damp,fragrant earth and the splashing puddles are very welcome.  
after the rain
 I suspect that this summer's lease is about to expire.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful photos and a lovely light-fingered commentary!


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