it showed up about the same time every day in the late afternoon. you could almost set your watch by it. other than the fact it was the same time every day there was an accompanying palatable change in the air. you could feel it. if you were outside you would stop and look for it. yes, there it is. way off in the distance. heading your way. depending on what the rest of your day was going to bring it might put a smile on your face. today a smile if only in your minds memory. you could smell it now. soon you would hear it. if it looked to be a particularly good day you might seek higher ground in order to watch it creep slowly towards you. perhaps shouting to friends. hey, check it out. here it comes. look at it. you gotta see this. sitting high up as it grows closer the solid massive wall of grey fills your vision from the earth to the sky. thundering closer. yeah, this is a really good one. soon the oppressive heat will be gone and if you were lucky it would last well into the night. pounding the tin roof. forming rushing rivers in the beach sand within minutes. great cracks of light add to the cacophony of sound. if it lasts, tonight will be safe. no sane person moving in this wall of water and sound. monsoon season. south vietnam. a long lifetime ago but still only yesterday.