Wednesday, March 28, 2007


I had intended to save these charming illustrations for April, when April showers follow March winds. However, the March winds are bringing us March showers.
Like the snoring old man, when "it's raining, its pouring," I want to stick my head at the foot of the bed and not get up 'til morning. Make that all day. I want to stay home, snuggle up with an afghan and read a book.
I can't complain, when the farmers need rain so badly. I would be almost criminal. And I'm grateful that we're having rain, not snow. I can't say, "Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day."
But still. The day was so dreary, so oppressive. The cloud cover was so low and heavy it seemed to be about 6 inches above my head. My back yard is almost pure dirt, so the dogs will be dragging in mud from now to Kingdom Come.
I remember feeling like this during the spring 25 years ago. We had just moved to Mandan, I knew very few people and I was homesick for Grand Forks. We lived on the top of a windy hill, our lot was bare, and our sidewalks hadn't been poured yet. It got so muddy we had to put pallets down for a sidewalk. Fortunately Beau, our dog at the time, was compliant enough to let me wash his feet in a bucket before he came into the house.
I was six months pregnant, worried that there was no room to put a baby. I thought things were hopeless. I wished and wished for a change for my circumstances.
"Don't wish your life away," my mom used to tell me. "Be careful what you wish for, you just may get it," other sage writers advise. It certainly happened to me. I never got to bring a baby home to that place, because it burned down that June. We lost everything but our dog and our cars. Fortunately, that terrible disaster had a silver lining. We were able to purchase our charming little gray stucco cottage and we've been here ever since - living ALMOST happily ever after.
I've been reading other blogs by writers in the Southern United States and in England, where they are seeing flowering bulbs, forsythia and apple blossoms. Another time, I would have said, "I wish spring would come more quickly."
But it will come in due time. No doubt there will be showers in April too, and they will bring May flowers. In the meantime, I will watch as the clean rain washes away the dust and greens up the lawns. I will watch rain drops hang plump and full from a budding branch. I will admire darkened tree trunks, swelling lilac buds and the faintest green mist in the treetops. I will watch children playing in puddles, for as surely as there are puddles, there are kids.
But can I wish for just one little thing? I wish I had a yellow rain slicker and hat, and some yellow rain boots, too.

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