“Just one more minute. Je me sens si vivante!”
“Wow! You changed.” I stared in her wide open eyes. “I feel so alive too, I feel so alive when I am with you, hurricane or not.”
“Moi aussi mon cher!” and she dug her face into my chest. The rain was so hard, the wind so strong, you could no longer see out into the distance. It was just a swirl of black, gray with a few city lights appearing at times. Lightning towards the Gulf occasionally made a strange greenish light in the distance.
–The Sommières Sun, to be published spring 2021
If you’ve ever been through a hurricane, you may understand the above conversation between Steve and his friend from my upcoming novel, The Sommières Sun. Hurricanes can be scary. If you feel like you could die, you might be too terrified to feel “si vivante” or “so alive.” However, if you can experience a storm from a place where you feel relatively safe, you can have an amazing experience just as Steve and his friend find out as they are visiting New Orleans. From the 9th floor of the Ace Hotel, they witness the awesome power mother nature can unleash.
There is something very primal about witnessing the awesome forces of wind and rain coming together at such a force. The feeling of the wind making it being hard to stand up, or the pelting of horizontal rain or even the smell of a hurricane affects one viscerally.
The scene I describe in The Sommières Sun is based on what I witnessed during Hurricane Zeta in late October 2020. As the video I captured shows, it was a force to be reckoned with. I tried to capture my characters encountering the forces described above and depicted in the video below.
And going through something like this with a person you care about can somehow make you feel even closer, like you shared something really important or even “cheated death” together.
I invite you to experience this scene this spring upon publication. It is one of my favorite scenes in the book!
The Sommières Sun is a sequel to A Moveable Marfa, published January 2020.
To keep up with the latest and see more of my photography, please follow my instagram account here. There are more videos and photos of Hurricane Zeta there.