I am glad today was not a school day in New Jersey.

Those of us sitting on the state's udder, the tip of Cape May county, got a nice ride for less than we'd pay at Morley's, and countless afternoon chats under the sun made the surreal feel real.

Now imagine if we had school tomorrow--kids would be assaulted with seismographs, joule calculators, fault maps, Richter scales, and whatever else tools teachers could find to make the real become more abstract.

All that matters, at some level, of course, but for most kids, I imagine having a spectacularly lovely August afternoon off to replay a minute's worth of otherworldliness will make this one stick for a long, long time.

Leslie and I went for a nature walk afterwards--the monarch butterflies are back in force, the dolphins were feeding off the beach, a fawn played peekaboo with us, and we saw a hummingbird sitting on a branch. I saw an ibis grope through the mud, a muskrat waddle its fat August body through the reeds, and hundreds of dragonflies shimmered around us, showing off their magnificently colored bodies, only rivaled by the porcelain berries we saw on the trail.

Earthquakes matter because we have infrastructure. Get outside, under the summer sun, and they matter a whole lot less.

I wish the same could be said for hurricanes.

The porcelain berries photo by Josconklin, used under CC.

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