I had forgotten how much I enjoy the rain, perhaps because there has been so little this year. This week, however, we were treated to many afternoon showers that seem to spread a calming effect over the area. The sound of raindrops hitting a tin roof of a cabin in May makes one feel secure and reflective. The joy of taking an afternoon nap while facing the bedroom window revealing a precipitous downpour outside is one of the great advantages of retirement in the Wood River Valley. For a time, your troubles fade away. Your mind returns to other rainy days in your life and, for the most part, you can smile, protecting your memories.
These mountain rains of ours are soothing, gentle and short-lived. Protected by the mountain ranges and forests of our home, we remain safe from the violent outbursts of weather experienced in other parts of the country. Our hearts go out to our fellow Americans in Oklahoma who are now recovering from those ominous tornadoes that befell them earlier this week. The fear that gripped the citizens of the town of Moore on Monday was real and heartfelt throughout the country by those who watched the devastation on cable TV.
I smile when I think of my arrival here during a May rainstorm in 1974 in a 1961 Ford Econoline van with carpeted bumpers. My wife, Nancy, and sons Mark and Harry were elated by the sight of the warm rain falling on our new mountain home and we all began to sing rain songs in various tongues. That will always be one of my fondest memories.
And, now, snuggled in a warm puff, I watch the rain drip down over the eaves and silently give thanks to our decision those many years ago to move to the mountains and start life anew. My happiness and qualified success here have never been determined by fiscal wealth or property gain. It has always been the warmth and security of being a local. I have hundreds of friends. I have seen my neighbors’ children grow up and thrive in this wonderful community. I’ve gone through 40 seasons of rain and never regretted it falling on my head. Therefore, I’m never gonna’ stop the rain by complainin’ … because I’m free. Nothin’s worryin’ me.
Nice talkin’ to you.