In Centreville, a storm’s bite strips off bark
Heat is almost mandatory in Washington in summertime, as is humidity. Combining the energies of the two may brew up another seasonal hallmark: thunderstorms.
Summer storms may cover so small an area that most of us neither see nor hear them. But on Friday, Jen Johnson of Centreville, in western Fairfax County, was in the right place at the right time.
She was at home about 6 p.m. when she heard the thunderclap and saw the lightning.
“I’ve heard loud thunder,” she said, but this sound was “unlike anything I’ve heard before,” The lightning flash was intense, and immediate. It had to be close, she knew, and after going outside, she saw how close.
Half a block away, a tree still stood. But much of its bark had been stripped off, in the way a banana is peeled.
The heat and humidity so typical of Washington in this season remained here Saturday, with the mercury reaching the 90s for the third straight day.