And then it rained. Finally the sky opened and fat drops of water started falling in rapid succession. Ottie was none too happy about it, his gallivanting put on hold for the day and, stuck inside, he sat by the sliding door letting the world know his displeasure by uttering a sequence of lamentations, a monochord and unbroken rumble that he can will to go on at great length.
I slid the vegetable pie in the oven and went to join him. Arm wrapped around his belly, I pushed the door open so we could both smell the dampness and fill our noses with the moisture we have been longing for. He, scanning the edge of the lawn for unwanted visitors, came up empty-handed: gophers, squirrels and rats were all in hiding. I, watching the drops hit the grass, hang on the edge of the palm leaves and do their merry rain dance, suddenly remembered how much I missed these deluges.
We sat on the stoop for a long time, keeping each other warm, the Beatles belting from the grooves of Abbey Road and the pie starting to infuse the kitchen with its mouth-watering aroma, until our feet got wet from the rain drops ricocheting up off the concrete and landing on our paws. It was only Ottie’s dislike for getting wet and the bone-chilling cold that stopped us from getting a good soak through.
This storm is not nearly enough to compensate for the worst drought California has ever experienced. In a few months our water will be rationed, our plants will be left to fend for themselves and even our showers will be curtailed. No other rain is forecast in the near future which makes this thick curtain of clouds enveloping my house in the canyon, and the rhythmic pang on the roof, even more precious.
Tomorrow we can go back to our relentless sun and the humidifier working overtime to alleviate the dryness, and to cursing the Chinese for their pollution, and mankind in general for not taking care of our most precious commodity. Just for tonight, we will silence the tv and sit watching the sky morph from slate to black while welcome tears stick to our windows.
Photos found in the public domain (because I didn’t think of taking any at the time – bad blogger)