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Waiting on the rain

We’ve had long stretches without rain here. The days are hotter than a dragon’s tongue, and the nights aren’t much cooler. These past few weeks, clouds to the west and east had drenched swaths of Alabama, but it was almost as if Empire was under an umbrella.

Rick WatsonThis past weekend when I checked the radar, it looked as if the day would be no different, but Jilda woke up with aching shoulders and wrists. As I wiped sleep from my eyes with the back of my fists, she rolled over and said, “It’s gonna rain today.” But as added insurance, I washed my truck.

We didn’t have a lot planned for the day, but Jilda noticed that my shoes were beginning to look a little gnarly. The instant she held the right slipper up and peered at me through the hole, I knew we’d be shopping before the day was out. I’d actually rather have an ingrown toenail than shop for shoes, but I knew resistance would be futile.

Jilda is a professional shopper and had I objected, she would have reeled off reasons why the health of my feet, my gait, and indeed my happiness hinged on whether or not I made the right decision.

So, we loaded up and headed to town to shop for footwear.

Jilda’s sister Pat went with us. While the clerk fitted me for shoes, Jilda and Pat looked at women’s dresses, makeup, shoes, handbags, and window treatments. Thank God, it took long enough to get the right pair of shoes, that I didn’t have to shop for curtains and pillow shams.

After buying a new pair of spiffy new shoes, my mood brightened, and I treated the girls to lunch at the new Cracker Barrel that opened out on the freeway.

We took a seat by the window and as we waited for food, we could see rain in the distance. It looked like fog, but you rarely see fog at noon in late August. The temps were in the 90s but off to the east, you could see cloud to cloud lightning.

It rained for a moment at the restaurant, but only long enough to turn the parking lot into a sauna. I wondered if the rain had passed us again.

When we got home, it was overcast and I could hear thunder off to the west. Soon I heard the rain coming. It started out like static on an AM radio with the dial slightly off station. When it came closer, we opened the door to the screen porch. The wind drove wisps of mist through the screen and onto my face. It was cool and refreshing.

A gentle rain after a drought makes the world seem like a kinder place.

At first, the rain puddled on the hard clay of the yard, but soon the drops began to soak into the roots of the water oak, and you could almost hear it sigh.

We had more showers that night. The temperature dropped enough to make it comfortable sleeping with the windows up.

We fell asleep to the sound of rain on a tin roof, with thunder in the distance. There is no better sleep aid.


 

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