Saturday, November 20, 2010

Watching The Sidewalk Dry

It's a gentle rain, warm and sweet smelling. The dusty street I drove this morning glistens now, damp, celebrating the moisture. Even through the dirty window screen, I can see raindrops bouncing irregularly on the pavement. They seem jubilant.

We're so parched here in the desert. Any tiny, immeasurable amount of precipitation stops all of us in our tracks. Facebook will go nuts here in a minute with the news, causing East Coast bloggers to laugh and point. They don't get it - we value every single droplet that loses its way and falls haphazardly on our dry soil. I stood outside a few minutes ago, priming the pump with my own tears, willing the gray clouds I've been watching on the horizon to sweep by my house, however briefly. Begging.

Arizona rain is frugal. The mountains are greedy, taking more than their fair share from every cloud before it has a chance to leave an autograph here in the desert. A few thousand baby raindrops were meagerly tossed our way just now, like candy to a crowd, but the street is already returning to its normal gray. Without a doubt, our big city weathermen will soon tell us not to worry - "it's a fast moving system and the sun will return in all its 115 degree glory any minute!" Yippee.

It's summer in the Valley of the Sun. It happens every year. There's no way to avoid its arrival. The beautiful green spring always makes empty promises and deserts us at the first puff of a hot, dry wind. We are left here to endure, counting the days until October and the certain relief late fall brings.

Ebb and flow, hot and cool, dry and . . . less dry. My heart aches sometimes for rain - blessed, cleansing rain. It clears the air, renews my hope, changes my outlook. I know there's a metaphor here - somewhere - but I can't find it right now. I'm just hanging on to the last few minutes of an overcast sky, thanking God for this small reprieve from the heat, watching the sidewalk dry.

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