Weather radar warns of a large band of storms approaching. It shows large areas west of us that are flooded. Currently I am sitting here with a cooling cup of coffee listening to the rain falling outside. With a window open I can hear that as well as the birds all around the house that are singing away. I did ask my son to move the tiller out of the way and move my Jeep into the protection of the carport. While he was doing that it thundered one time, which had Bella and Molly crying to be allowed inside. Since it only happened once and the rain is not that heavy and there is that big front porch, no, so far they are not inside.
Listening to the rain though, has me taking a stroll down memory lane. Which really isn’t that far since most of my good memories happened here on this dirt lane anyway. As a kid growing up, only the heavy thunderstorms were of concern. More often than not we would be out enjoying the feel of a summer shower on sun heated skin. We did have make shift club houses built from tin that our grandfather had brought home from somewhere. It was fun to sit inside and listen to the rain as it struck the tin and watch as the water made its way under the so called walls and around our feet.
There came a point, when I didn’t have to look to the sky for rain. You could smell in in the air, see the changes in the leaves on the trees as they turned to welcome the moisture. Many times I watched as the rainfall made its way up through the woods to where I was standing. Hearing the water falling, drumming on the ground as it approached, like the sound of thundering hoof beats. Many times I stood and felt the rain falling onto my face and running down cheeks dusty from play.
Even as a so called adult, I’ve walked the woods and heard the approach of a summer shower. I stood under a giant leaf Magnolia tree, sheltered as the rain fell heavily around me. I’ve walked through the woods, hearing the rain striking the leaf canopy above, but directed away from me leaf to leaf, falling somewhere off to one side.
Those times, always brought a healing peace. Washing away the stress, the fear, the concerns of the moment as I walked and listened.
It is difficult though at times, when the rains are long lasting or fall in torrents that can’t flow away quickly enough. Or worse, have nowhere to go. Many times I’ve stood outside in a downpour trying to divert water or make sure the drain pipe is clear. Many times I’ve fought the onslaught of water as it threatened to flood my house. I’ve dug trenches around a low built porch and built make shift barriers using bricks. It works, but must be maintained. The dogs do not make that easy, since they constantly dislocate the bricks. When I am able, I will purchase more cement blocks to create a better, more stable wall.
My concerns though are minor compared to what others are facing. Mine are an inconvenience, while others are life threatening.
Down the road from us, a safe distance away, is a river. Down river is a town that when the river runs high, floods. I saw yesterday where parts are flooded and with more storms approaching, are at serious risk for worse. The National Weather Service radar is showing areas west that are in a bad way. One of which is Nashville, Tennessee. I have friends there, I hope they are okay and safe.
Its odd, how sitting here listening to the rainfall can be soothing and peaceful, and yet at the same time worrisome at the dangers it can and often does bring. I don’t know whether it is some odd sense of adventure or what that causes people to do dangerous things. I have lost track of how many people have been injured or killed because of being attracted to flooded areas.
Even if a flooded river appears placid, there is great power flowing through there. A strength that a mere mortal can’t beat. How many rescues have been made because someone thought they could drive through a flooded street? How many rescues, because someone got too close and slipped? How many rescues due to trying to maneuver a canoe, kayak or even inflatable down a flooded river? I won’t even bother mentioning the difficulties in driving in severe storms.
Right now, as the rain falls, I believe I will choose a book and make myself comfortable. Safe and dry from rainy days and dangers.