Gradually, the clouds increased and the weather forecaster predicted rain tonight and tomorrow–a 30 per cent chance and even better chances toward the weekend. After months of rainless days and nights, dust storms, and weather extremes, I hardly believed it. On the way home from work, I stopped to buy two guara and one rosemary to replace those that died over the winter, an unusual occurrence; both usually make it through. After feeding Rosie, I decided to plant them in case the forecaster’s predictions held. Not really believing rain would come, I watered them, adding root stimulator.
The sprinkles started, but only a little, what people here call a “12 inch rain”–one drop every 12 inches. It stopped, the wind blew harder, and a brown dust fog filled the canyon. I shut the windows. I almost went out to start the sprinkler. Suddenly, lightning struck somewhere near the house, thunder boomed. The sprinkles continued to start and stop with intermittent lightning and thunder. After having two TVs struck by lightning in the last six years even with surge protectors and turned off, I’m a little leery about lightning storms. I left the TV and computer off and initially wrote this by hand.
Just as I started to walk outside, having given up on real rain, it started, not the crashing, thunderstorm rain we usually receive, but a gentle, steady, back East kind of rain. I opened the windows, inhaling the rain smell. As I write this, the rain continues; it’s now been nearly an hour with writing and interruptions from phone calls and me checking to make sure it is not raining in the windows or the French doors to the patio. It plays a staccato tune on the green steel roof.
Three miles down the road in front of a house at the intersection of two country roads, a sign stands: “In the name of Jesus pray for rain.” Perhaps they have been praying hard.