Thunderstorms on road trips are the best.
Take me somewhere out west, where the signs of mankind dwindle down to two ribbons of asphalt and the cars and trucks upon them.
Crank up the big black clouds, and send them smoldering across the high plains. Let the distant clouds burst here and there, creating ribbons of dark blue rain that cascade down from the sky.
And lightning. Fill the thunderheads with flashes of brilliant lightning that crackle across the black sky.
I'll draw a deep breath as I drive toward this ominous sight, knowing that I'm about to experience the raw, untamed forces of nature.
Rain suddenly drums down on the car with a deafening force. Windshield wipers are helpless to keep up with the deluge and traffic slows to a crawl.
I'll grip the steering wheel tighter and concentrate on staying on the pavement.
The tension will mount as the storm crashes above, behind, all around me.
Then, just as suddenly as it began, the rain fades away. The dark clouds blow through and incredibly, blue skies appear, as if nothing ever happened.
And the calm after the storm often brings one last treasure: a glorious sunset.
For more stories about my road trip, read here: