June 29, 2009
On Friday night, I witnessed something I had never seen before, and when that happens, I don't know about you, but I immediately want to share that with everyone!!
Friday was a really nice day weatherwise here in NYC, after what seems like weeks of incessant rain now. After work, I arranged to meet a friend for a couple of drinks, sit outside and soak up the evening sun. No sooner were we seated with our beers than a very dramatic change came over the weather. A portentous wind rose unexpectedly, blowing tableclothes up, rattling windows and knocking umbrella stands over. As pregnant black clouds gathered over Manhattan and the fat telltale drops of a storm began to fall, people scurried inside gathering their belongings. People cowered as the thunder boomed right overhead. I'm not sure why I love electrical storms so much, but they give me shivers down my spine! For an hour or so, the New York sky flashed and roared at us, poured torrential rain upon us, violent winds blew and it seemed as if night had descended at only 6pm.
And then it was over, the black clouds roared off to terrify elsewhere, allowing the sunset through to create a most unique canvas of the sky above us. Odd as it sounds, I spend quite a lot of my time looking at the skies, at colours, cloud formations, sunrises and sunsets...and I had never before seen a sight to equal this one. A most unusual light fell over the city - not night, not day, not twilight. If it had not been so breathtaking a sight above, it would have been a little spooky!
Of course, I was nowhere within striking distance of home to grab my trusty Nikon and, for the first time ever I wished I had been the owner of a camera phone. So unfortunately, I had no means to capture this fantastic spectacle of nature myself.
Next day, I got online to check out what other photographers had managed to capture and found these incredible shots of the Manhattan skyline after the storm. http://bit.ly/OfwIM. Photographer: Jason Kuffer.
After you've lived in New York for a while, you realise that it takes something special or really noteworthy to make it as a topic of conversation for the New Yorkers for longer than a day, and unsurprisingly for the last few days almost the first thing from everyone's lips is "Hey, did you catch that storm on Friday night?!!" That evening, the Unstoppable City pretty much ground to a halt as people got out of cars and stood in the middle of street staring heavenward in bewildered awe.....
Why all the fuss? I don't know. As hackneyed as it may sound, I think there's just something about nature that reminds me of what a great and powerful universe we live in, and as a minute and very powerless part of it all, we are so privileged to witness beauty like this.
Listen to Leftfield's Storm 3000