I was on my way home after walking a friend back to her apartment when I saw the flashing red lights of a fire department vehicle about a block away, just across the street from my office building. I walked up to see what was going on, and was treated to this beautiful sight of the fire hydrant being flushed, framed in the glow of the fire truck behind it. Fire hydrants put out a lot of water, and I stood for a few minutes and watched the huge arc the jet of the hydrant made, the droplets fanning out and almost reaching the other side of the street about ten feet away; quite the distance. Behind me, trickles and rivulets streamed down the slight slope of Charter Street and vanished beneath darkened cars, gurgling away into the hidden drains. The fire department guy monitoring the whole situation sat on a bench nearby, smoking a cigarette and watching me with bland curiosity as I snapped a few pictures. I guess he was too used to the whole thing to notice how beautiful it was.

We had just gotten back home from watching Wall-E, which I haven’t yet heard a single bad review of from either professional nor word of mouth (we agreed that it was an amazingly adorable film). My friend and I had planned on just biking from my apartment to the theater, then catching the bus back, but I seem to have this gremlin-like ability to repel Madison Metro buses away from me when I need them. So we ended up taking an unplanned bike-back as well, for a total of around 15 miles or so. Ironically, we were a mile into the trip when the very bus we thought we’d missed roared past us, getting all the green lights (as we got the red ones shortly afterward) and vanishing quickly over a massive hill. The route took us through Speedway, which is a darkened path with a cemetery on either side. Lightning was already crackling in the distance, which of course made for a stereotypical Frankenstein-esque scene on either sides of the road as we biked through it. I wouldn’t have been half-surprised to see a hunched figure, illuminated in a dim glow, unearthing ancient remains beneath a crumbling tomb.

After I got home, the heavens pulled a fire hydrant imitation and started roaring, just barely missing drenching me completely with bullet-sized droplets and soaking the windowsill of my bedroom. At least that part of the night worked out well!