Broken Bay Writers – Stories of NSW Central Coast and beyond

Scribbles on life, the universe and everything… Woy Woy, Ettalong, Umina and teh Central Coast that is!

Tag Archives: rain

The Triumph is wet behind the ears… now!

The rain pelts down hard, leaving sheets of water across the F3 freeway north. Peering through the droplet distorted visor into the gloom ahead, I can see blurry shapes… mysterious red orbs warning me of the traffic surrounding us. I can’t see far, I lean forward… watchful as the lights flash about and we surf the puddles, resplendent in rooster tails of passing cars and trucks.

After riding about 240 kilometers we had stopped at Hornsby to “tog up”, put our rain gear on. Judy was concerned. This was the longest ride she had experienced on a road bike, she was starting to ache a bit but was in great spirits. Judy is an excellent passenger. It must be the early years when she rode dirt bikes. Judy is concerned about the heavy rain we are about to experience.

The 60 kilometers home in heavy rain goes well. The Triumph is very well behaved in the wet. I personally love riding in the rain. The blast of motorcycling comes from exhilaration and risk. The wet increases the risk and you ride accordingly. The F3 is boring under dry conditions. Add heavy rain and the equation changes. Your senses are heightened, alert and aware of the increased danger.

When you ride, you get many experiences that make it addictive… your senses are treated to smells, temperatures, risks, adrenaline and euphoria. To me, the danger reminds me of what I have and offers me a challenge. Although the danger is not always that high when riding, it is always there. When we face serious danger, death even, then we are most aware that we are alive!

I love the Stormy Nights.

I fully expected the weather here in Australia to be very different from Canada, mainly the copious amounts of sunny days, but I was surprised by the amount of stormy nights. My partner calls them “crackers”.

We are lucky enough to overlook Broken Bay. This allows us the luxury of watching the storm make it’s way across the water before it hits. The lightening fills the sky from all around us. On the one side, It makes it’s way across the water, on the other side it sidles over the hill. Sometimes the lightening streaks right across the sky as far as the eye can see. Breathtaking! The thunder follows (or is it the other way around) with a slow roll working it’s way up to an angry roar. The earth shakes under the violent angry sky.

In our house, there is a rush to unplug the computers, turn off the lights, make a drink and then settle in to watch the show. If the rain has not yet come, we will cuddle up on the deck in order to not only watch the show, but feel the electricity in the air. Knowing all along, that when the storm reaches us, we will have to move this party inside.

When the rain comes, it comes down by the “bucket full.” I love to stand out in the rain getting that immediate “soaked” feeling. The air is warm, yet often hail will follow a thunderstorm. I find this very odd! In British Columbia I am used to cold hail that coats the ground and makes the world icy and white. Here in Australia it is so warm that the hail melts as soon as it hits the ground.

These storms are very spectacular at night when darkness forms the backdrop for the angry lightening streaking across the sky, but these storms happen during the day too. In the daylight hours, I revel in watching Australians running with papers over their head trying to stay dry. Last week I even saw a person running along with a plant pot over her head. I find this hard to understand because the rain is warm; it’s like having a bath.

When the rain stops, the sun comes back out and minutes later you may see a few puddles or rivers running in the ditch, but for the most part the sun has done it’s job and the ground is dry.

Australia is a land of extremes. This is well known. I did not know that the weather would be so extreme from one minute to the next. It can be 35 degrees out. I watch the wind turn to a “southerly” and then watch the thermometer drop. In less than an hour it can be 20 degrees. This extreme difference in temperature is part of what helps create “the perfect storm”.

I have yet to capture a photo of the lightening as it illuminates the sky, I don’t think I have the right camera for it, but I would sure love to. I guess I will just have to replay the storms in my memory… until I see the next one working it’s way across Broken Bay!