Yes, Enough Is Enough
We didn’t have an in-ground or above ground swimming pool when we were kids. Maybe a few of those hard plastic kiddie pools indented the backyard lawn, but they were nothing to write home about. Or we made friends with the neighbor kids whose homesteads included a lovely cement pool.
A sprinkler and a garden hose were our best bets for cooling off on a hot summer’s day. Even better was that one portion of the front sidewalk that sank lower than the rest. When it rained, a large puddle measuring a few inches deep would form. We ran through that silly puddle and even sat in it, sometimes with lightning threatening around us and our parents yelling at us from the safety of the front porch.
“Don’t you have enough sense to get in out of the rain?” they would say. And we would moan … as if they never were kids who ran through holes full of water.
Today, I would not give you a plug nickel for that puddle or any puddle, for that matter. I’m fed up with teeth-rattling potholes that disguise themselves as innocent pools of water. The tire stores are seeing a uptick in revenue as a result of those holes.
That sound of rain on the roof or tapping at the window used to lull me to sleep. Now that first drop of rain or clap of thunder I hear keeps me up at night.
I run to the window and peer into the darkness as if I can actually see the rain. I thwart the water leaking in through the sliding door with some old towels. Throw in a stiff wind and I’m scrounging around for flashlights with healthy batteries in case the power goes off — again. The hubby checks the fuel for the generator to save the food supply in the event another tree feels the need to fall on power lines. All those romantic notions of holding hands and walking in the rain with your sweetheart are muddy memories. It’s all I can do to keep a pair of shoes or boots dry. My umbrellas have taken a turn for the worse as they never are inside long enough to dry out. Don’t you love it when they turn inside out with every gust of wind? I have never had much success or finesse at getting the wet umbrella into the car without spraying water across the seats.
My grownup concerns about rainfall and floods and river crests are no fun at all. While I live atop a hill, the recent heavy rainfalls have heaved up the roads leading to our home. So much for paradise. All is not lost, it’s simply a new challenge.
I worry about each and every relative, friend and co-worker whose homes are in the path of destruction from our previously docile streams and river. Even a trip to the grocery store can be precarious as water rises into the parking lots.
Darkness and sometimes fog, too, complicate travel in the pouring rain. As I write this, I shiver at the latest predictions for yet another river flood, knowing first the creeks will spill over their banks and threaten my way of life – and yours, too.
Be safe, my friends. Drier days are coming.
(Heather Ziegler can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.)