White Dog and Steve fired up the grill under a low ceiling of dark clouds. To the west, the sky shimmered an unnatural copper color as the setting sun pushed through the smoke clouds. The clouds, and a shifting acrid smell, were thankfully, the only things left of the Bosque fire from last night that burned just north of town and threatened a friend's animal sanctuary.
As the winds turned, we smelled rain above the fragrant garlic laced beef that sizzled. Irresistibly the members of the White Dog Army were drawn from the house to supervise on the deck. Outside they were uneasy at the fast approaching storm and wanted Steve to hurry. I joined the group and we sat all together, touching, and found some patience and ease in being together. When the lightning began, the White Ones pressed tighter and whined for the chef to speed things up.
Steve was just loading the little packets of seasoned potatoes and the perfectly done steaks onto the platter as the first blops of rain hit. The frenzy dance around him as he attempted to go inside distracted the WDA until the CRACK of thunder snapped heads upward. We all barely made it into the house before the clouds split open and dumped buckets on our parched earth.
Five minutes later, as the last of the storm's fury abated, we all sat together to share steak and salad and potatoes...the closed blinds kept us safe from the flashes and distant growls as we savored Steve's meal.
The White Dog Army is thankful this Thursday for thunderstorms that are brief and temporary.