When I arrived back in Canada after an RCAF dependent's tour of duty in then West Germany I noticed some things were missing. Not in whole but in part: wasps, June bugs, and thunder & lightning.
Thunder & Lightning
Perhaps it's due to a more temperate climate that Germany gets bigger storms than we do here in southern Ontario, Canada. Our German landlord more than once had to replace roof tiles on our Iffezheim apartment building. The wind was something. The thunder & lightning was something else. I remember my pals and I being dropped off one day by the school bus right into a lightning storm. For some reason the atmospheric tumultuousness encouraged me to run for it -- friends called from behind. Off I went, my six or seven year old legs a blur, propelling me at warp speed down the sidewalk. Not long after my sudden acceleration everything became a bright white. A super flash. I mean everything in my field of vision; there were no shades of gray. The first thing that crossed my mind: I was missed by that much. Now I've modified it to: I almost met Big Sparky himself.
(Something about after school storms.)
Cut to a year or two later.
After a long day at CFB Baden-Soellingen my sister and I departed the school bus at the usual place, right near Iffezheim's Roman Catholic church, and we made our uneventful way home. Suddenly the lightning started, quickly followed by the thunder. As we reached our apartment door, CRACK! My normally sedate sister emitted an awful scream. ("It's just thunder!") The scream was probably more a Penny Robinson scream than one as chilling as what I perceived at the time, but the point was made.
We came back to Canada and the thunder & lightning seemed less energetic. In a way, I missed Germany.