|Mexican hat, also called prairie coneflower|
Here in the Texas hill country on this May Saturday morning, it’s been raining off and on for the past thirty hours or so. The forecast for the next few hours is for more thunderstorms, so I zipped outside just now during a break between showers to take the photos pictured here.
|Scabiosa or pincushion flower|
|Limestone pitted by the rain holds water naturally.|
I had to chuckle when I read the following line from the National Weather Service forecast for our locale: Weather conditions will improve significantly this evening into Sunday.
Really? The weather can’t get any better that what it is right now.
My birth occurred at the end of the seven year drought in this part of Texas in the 1950’s. My parents were part of a generation who came of age during the Great Depression, served the United States during World War II, and then, during the early years of their marriage, scratched out a living farming and ranching for those seven years of drought with practically no precipitation.
(If you want to read a brilliant and literary description of the difficulties of that era in Texas, read Elmer Kelton’s novel The Time It Never Rained. During the time of that drought, Kelton worked as an agricultural reporter and said he spent seven years trying every day to think of some other way to write, “Still dry.”)
So it isn’t surprising that my parents were experts in making do, building from scratch, and doing without. And they impressed those values on their children.
One of Daddy’s favorite jokes was: “You can never have too much rain or too many white-faced baby calves. We almost had too much rain one time. [Here he paused before the punchline.] There was three feet of water in the courthouse.”
We’re in a drought right now that compares in scope and severity with the extremely difficult years that so influenced my parents and their peers. Today’s rain is a only a move in the right direction, not the end of overall dire conditions, but it rejuvenates my spirits as it perks up the plants in my garden. They're tough (like my parents), selected for our often arid heat, but they love the rain. I can almost hear them singing.
It’s heartening to see water do its magic.
Complete the following: If there is magic on this planet, it _____________ .
Complete the following: My parents were of a generation who _____________.
For quite a few years, Chris Bradley taught English and creative writing to high school students in the Texas hill country. She now has time to travel, garden, ride horses, and mountain bike, but she still misses those discussions with students and continues to be thankful for all the lessons which they taught her.