Thursday, February 03, 2005

The Storm

Stepping out the door, Renee pulled it closed hard to ensure it latched
properly - it didn't sometimes, she knew. Then she turned around, and froze.
She'd heard the wind and rain last night, had awoken several times to the
crashing of thunder uncomfortably close at hand. But she hadn't imagined
anywhere near the devastation she now saw before her. Entire trees had been
felled, buildings had broken windows, and the house next door was missing
its roof. It was hard to reconcile the destruction with the current harmless
puffy clouds, the sunshine, and the rapidly vanishing puddles. Her
neighbours worked alongside emergency services, cleaning up and repairing
things, and she wondered how her own apartment block had been spared.

She picked her way slowly through the wreckage to the train station, only to
be greeted by an endless recorded message. It stated calmly that no trains
would be running until further notice, and blandly gave apologies for the
inconvenience. I suppose that makes it alright then, thought Renee. As long
as you're sorry. A quick glance down the street confirmed her suspicions
that no trams were running either. She couldn't afford a taxi. Home, then,
and a phone call to work to say she couldn't make it. That is, if the phone
lines weren't down.


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