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Monday, March 22, 2010

PERTH: "Big storm bin come up!" Payton L. Inkletter exclaimed, shaking his fur dry, after experiencing the breaking of the longest dry spell on record

Be all that as it may, meanwhile:
'In other news…'
22nd March 2010

Monday: Soooo tired, but up we dragged ourselves, to get ready to visit Mum and take her to her doctor. I hit the sack last night after three, but took ages to fall asleep, and was fighting a headache inhabiting the shadows, refusing to show itself and fight against some white comforters (I was too exhausted to get up to engage in some chemical warfare).

Getting ourselves ready, from our mid-morning get up onwards, the humidity and heat were stifling, and it was a harbinger for what was to come as a result of the sauna and inferno like conditions late in the day…

We arrived towards one at Mum's in Melville, then found ourselves on time at her doctor's surgery at half one in Booragoon, but the doctor was running an hour late. A long wait ensued.

Finally, in the Garden City shopping centre nearby, Mum treated her favourite child, moi, to a Miss Maud's savoury spinach roll and a Goulbourn Valley apples and guava juice, Missus Inkletter, her favourite daughter-in-law, settling just for a juice, due to her strict Byetta inspired diet. Then began our shopping in Coles, and while in there the heavens broke…

For ages we heard hail thundering down on the roof, and later on our way back to our car in the basement near Myers we passed a huge section of the mall covered in water. The car park had a lake in it.

We drove to the Myaree Shopping Centre in steady rain and a spectacular lightning show, and Mum got some things in the newsagency there, with the lightning outside and above us intensifying. About five o'clock, when we stepped out of the newsagency, the rain began sheeting in horizontally, and even though we were six feet back from the roof drip line and against the wall, we were soaked.

The newsagency closed its doors, and we were stuck for ten minutes as one of the most intense rain storms I've experienced in Perth drenched me while I sheltered Mum in a nook, my back from my neck down to my shoes being soaked to my skin, and all the while six feet in from the edge of the low roof line. Mum began to shake from shock, fear, and wetness, poor thing, the lightning immediately above continuously splitting the suburban sky, prematurely dark. I eventually shepherded her into the nearby chemist, where they let me get a chair for her, and I held her to comfort her. Mum kept saying she would fall ill from getting wet, and I kept assuring her that due to the heat this would not happen: this rain was warm, and the air was warm, the storm brought much latent heat from the heavens. I got her into the car some twenty minutes after this explosion of water, blinding light, and electricity from the skies, even though it was still raining, but the extra wetness we copped from this short excursion was of little import – we were already drenched, Mum less than than me, fortunately.

Missus Inkletter had remained in the car, and it was so dark she saw none of our plight, even though we were but twenty feet from her. Even she was scared by the buffeting the Suzuki sustained during the storm. We carefully drove the few kms back to Mum's unit at Melville, negotiating gloom, huge puddles, and chaotic traffic, and got Mum to her front door, where who should we find standing there but sister Helena, one of my two loving sisters, who was up from Broomehill this afternoon, some ten thousand miles southeast in the wheatbelt. So joy it was to see and hug her.

We ushered Mum inside, and she quickly dried herself and changed into her night garments, and even though I was drenched, I sat on a plastic bag on Mum's couch and with Missus Inkletter, the four of us chinwagged for well over an hour. I shared my wild idea with Helena, the one that I had back two or so weeks ago, and which we told Mum about shortly thereafter. So the the seeds are planted, as unlikely as it is truly to ripen in the form we've described. If anyone can catalyse an idea that has a shred of possibility, Helena can.

When we set off home, it was after 7, and naively I entered the Kwinana Freeway from Canning Highway heading north, only to find quickly it was a mistake, for the traffic was crawling all the way to the city centre. The huge puddles we encountered all the way to our home in the northern suburbs were testament to the fact that the city's drainage system is designed only for averages. Trees were down, and rubbish strewn everywhere. But wow, Perth's longest dry spell has broken, hallelujah!

Cadbury the tabby stray kitten spent half the evening till after midnight alternating between our laps while we watched our regular Aunty programs, including Four Corners, Q&A, Lateline, Lateline Business, and then Letterman on Ten. Just when I sat on the throne to do a poo, Missus Inkletter having retired an hour earlier with the door closed and the fans on, thus insulating the bedroom from noise, the mobile phone rang (our landline off the hook as per the usual procedure overnight in the interests of an undisturbed night's sleep), but I was at such a delicate stage of the evacuation procedure, that I had to let it ring out; when I finally was cleaned up and able to, I checked it, fearful it was The Dear Leader phoning in distress (as has happened dozens of times over the years), the whole reason we are forbidden ever to be away from this infernal mobble, but it was Baby Inkletter. I was worried also that she might be in distress, as has happened before, so I phoned her back to learn that she was unaware that it was so late! We had a chat about the day's wild storm, Cadbury, and an email joke we are playing on each other at the moment.

Back to Lateline: The (Leigh) Sales Graph: I couldn't believe it when I beheld Ms Sales interview David Letterman's mother! Or at least an amazing dead ringer in the form of the Brookings Institution's senior fellow in governance studies, Dr Thomas E. Mann! Ms Sales was turned out in a smart dark striped jacket contrasting with a white camisole, no jewellery but for tiny pearl earrings, subtle-effect make-up, and a most becoming slight variation of her hairstyle of late, loose and flaring, while Mrs Letterman, er… Mr Mann was smartly presented in a grey suit white shirt combo, a spotted maroon tie, and a blue rinse hair-do.

Their topic was the US health-care-reform bill which has just passed the House of Representative, and the discussion they had was informed helpfully for me by Ms Sales' brief discussion with Stephen Long just last Friday night about the bill. I enjoyed this interview, and Mr Mann is obviously close to the heartbeat of what's going on in the U.S.A. Government, and Ms Sales' questions were those of someone also following things there rather well. Frankly, keeping to a Letterman theme, I wouldn't give the U.S.A.'s problems to a monkey on a rock.

I got an email reply today from the Perth Observatory to my questions about the strange markings I saw crossing the crescent moon Friday evening:

From: Payton L. Inkletter [mailto: paytonlinkletter@gmail.com]
Sent: Saturday, 20 March 2010 1:09 AM
To: Observatory, Perth
Subject: Moon markings Friday evening 19th March

Hello friends
Between about 7.40 p.m. and 7.50 p.m. yesterday evening, Friday 19th, whilst driving west along Marshall and Beach Roads near Whiteman Park I witnessed some very dark geometrical and other shapes moving across the crescent moon, low on the western horizon.

I have never seen anything like this before, and I am certain it was not caused by clouds. Has anyone else asked you about this?

Was I imagining things?

Kindest regards ... Payton L. Inkletter

----- Original Message -----
From: Williams, Andrew
To: paytonlinkletter@gmail.com
Cc: Observatory, Perth
Sent: Monday, March 22, 2010 12:22 PM
Subject: RE: Moon markings Friday evening 19th March

The moving patterns you saw were almost certainly clouds, but very distant ones. The moon set at 8:04pm that night, so between the times you mentioned, any clouds in front of the moon would have been 10-20km away, much further than you would be able to see clouds normally unless they were fairly thick. Thin, wispy high level clouds at that distance would have been invisible, except as they passed in front of the moon.


----- Original Message -----
From: Payton L. Inkletter [mailto: paytonlinkletter@gmail.com]
To: Williams, Andrew
Sent: Wednesday, March 24, 2010 2:37 AM
Subject: Re: Moon markings Friday evening 19th March

Hello Andrew
I appreciate you taking the trouble to reply to me, and given that an alternative to your reasonable explanation is that I was witnessing an alien space craft invasion of the moon and earth, I think it makes by far the better sense to accept your high cloud explanation!

It was certainly a fascinating sight the likes of which I've never experienced before in my 53 years, so if it was clouds, more power to them!

Kindest regards ... Payton L. Inkletter

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