For days we’d been hearing about it – a monster rainstorm approaching, threatening to wipe clean all that had come before, the local TV weatherpeople delivering updates with gravitas atop barely hidden glee. Finally, some action! Yesterday we scoured the stores looking for a raincoat for Lucas; we’d equipped Zoe with a Hello Kitty slicker to match her Hello Kitty rainboots, and I’d been lucky indeed to find the last size 6/7 waterproof jacket at our local REI. It’s Southern California: we don’t do weather.

The storm fell on us like a raptor, shrieking, claws outstretched. The drive to school was a trip through a Lucasfilm asteroid belt – I dodged garbage cans, palm fronds, pieces of roof. “Never tell me the odds!”, I muttered to no one. The wind buffeted, the rain pelted, Beth called to tell me the power was out. Lucas emerged from the kindergarten classroom, beaming. Storms are cool. I had a thought. “Wanna go check out the ocean? Should be pretty big.” “YYYYYYYEAH!”

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