As i watered the orchard and went about the evening chores the wind picked up and the air became cooler. The sky clouded over and nightfall drew ever closer. It felt as if the forecast for rain the following morning may come true. The weather was not producing at the moment but the atmosphere seemed ripe and moody and it looked as if we might all get our wish for rain the following morning. This year had been so dry everyone’s rain barrels were empty and the aquifers were low.
i did stumble upon some tiny deer turds and realized in all likelihood i was probably looking at fairo’s poop. It was fairly fresh which meant he was still up and kicking despite his death-wish antics. Well, good for him. I may have underestimated the incredible luck of the crazy little buckling.
The following morning i thought nothing of the sprinkles in the air and the pea soup fog. I figured it was just another tease, a substitute for the arrival of actual moisture. I drove to Fredericksburg in the dark, parked, took my ten minute nap, and entered the building to clock in. Five minutes later a huge line of storms developed into red on the radar and dumped buckets and heaping buckets of water from center point all the way to junction. Of course, fredericksburg was included in the line and the pouring rain began to make a rushing noise on the roof.
I found some of the patients up in the dining room looking out the windows. They knew there was a chance of rain and they had been up since 3 waiting to see if nature would deliver. The excitement was palpable. Everyone was quietly listening to the rain with giddy smiles plastered on their faces in the dimly lit room. I said, “It’s pouring!” Two patients nodded their heads and a third said, “i know! Isnt it wonderful?! Nothing like starting the day off with a good rain!” I clocked in and glanced at my patient list. It poured rain for a couple hours so each patient i woke up and said good morning to in the darkness got to hear the words, “It’s raining”. Each time i said it the patient sat straight up in bed and strained their ears asking, “is it now?” Or “really?” I watched them get dressed and go through their morning bathroom tasks with an urgency that they didn’t normally demonstrate. They were like children looking forward to a snow day. I took each patient out onto the porch in the darkness to finish up their session and they lifted weights under the roof covering while watching the trees thrash and the rain come down in torrents. They were ecstatic. It was some universal language in Fredericksburg. Weather was always exciting and rain was always a blessing. I realized that i enjoyed treating retired farmers and ranchers more than any other population because they seemed to pay attention to nature as much as i did. Treating this population was fulfilling. I was not hustling to get the full time hours i could between many towns and many companies but that was okay. There was something to be said for doing work that one cherished and watching old stewards of the land enjoy rain in the pre-dawn darkness while doing arm exercises on the porch.