Thursday, March 10, 2016
With all of the torrential rain passing through the country, it is fair to say that I was fully expecting our fair share. It hasn't really started raining here yet, but it will be soon, and it is supposed to be bad. The flooding has already hit some friends and acquaintances in other cities and I'm hoping that we do not take on any water once it starts coming down here.
But it's been threatening to rain for days here, so it is easy to get complacent, or to not trust the words of the meteorologist. It's easy to think that it won't get so bad here...
And then I remember.
I remember the time when I was a senior in high school and it rained so much that the school closed for three days because it was flooded. We got exempt from our exams that year, because this all happened only a few days before.
I remember Hurricane Katrina and seeing the houses moved from their foundations and vehicles washed away.
I remember seeing images of houses flooded by rivers cresting their banks where the protections may not be so good.
And it makes me realize just how powerful water really is. Water shaped canyons over eons; its ebb and flow stirs our oceans, and those same oceans were the cauldrons from which life sprang forth.
Water is amazing.
It is a blessing, and there is great beauty in it, such as waves crashing rhythmically against the shore, or the bubbling of a brook through the woods.
But there is great danger in it too, as in the tsunami or flood or storm surge that washes away everything built by human hands.
Water is the great equalizer.
We need it. We cannot live without it. It makes up at least half of our bodies. Without it we would die.
Yet, too much of it can kill us or destroy our civilization.
It is so abundant on our planet, yet so scarce in the universe.
It is so simple a molecule, but its interactions create such complexity.
Water is awe-inspiring, breath-taking, wonderful and scary.
The storm is upon us now, and the rain has started to fall. It reminds me of the necessity of and the power in water. Drinking it is essential, and something I try to do every day. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don't get enough. Sometimes it takes the form of tea, while others it is just clean, pure and cold. Sometimes I like to dance in it with my children, but sometimes, I just want to hide from it.