Wind, Moon, and Clouds

  A friend sent me a text message Monday night:
go out and look at clouds
  I was inside at the time hoping the wind that was whistling through my storm door was not going to bring down one of the Douglas-firs in my backyard. My instincts told me to stay inside, but once I stepped out the front door, I threw caution to the wind (literally) and stayed out for the next hour.
   Stratus clouds were flying past the quarter moon. From my front yard, I watched the trees dance, the moon play hide-and-seek, and and endless parade of translucent clouds. What I thought was lightning flashed every few minutes, but later learned from UW meteorologist Cliff Mass that the brilliant flashes were actually power transformers blowing...which would explain why we had 200,000 people without power and many local school closures on Tuesday.
   Unfortunately, I didn't exactly figure out my camera settings to best capture this dramatic scene. I chose a "nighttime" exposure, disabled the flash, set the ISO everywhere from 80 to 1600. Next time, I will figure out how to set it for "nighttime with waxing gibbous," "high-speed clouds," "45 m.p.h wind stop-action," and "thrashing trees." And, I will learn how to have Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata play when you hover your mouse over my photographs.   
   After a dark and stormy night (hahahahhaha), the dawn was exquisite...from my side yard which faces east.

    To say the weather began to deteriorate seems wrong. Does this (above) look like deterioration? Yet, that's what it is called. And unstable. Here (below) an unstable sky with stables...the day before our first cat-and-dog rain of the season.