[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he rain used to drive my father crazy. He hated the idea of being trapped indoors; especially when there was work to do outside. And there was always work to do, he’d never let anyone forget it.
On rainy days we did the same thing. My father would read the paper on the porch, and complain about feeling as useless as “tits on a boar.” My mother would sit on the swing, knitting something for somebody’s baby. And we’d just watch the rain fall.
The sound of rain on forty acres is deafening.
Occasionally, my father would put down his paper and just stare. He’d shake his head from time to time and say, “Dammit, I had a lot to do today.” But I don’t think he meant a word of it – not really. I think he liked the break.
Sometimes, we’d sit out there for the entire day. Mother would make sandwiches for lunch. Daddy would wolf one down, still reading the paper and say, “I wish this rain would let up.”
And nobody answered him.
For the life of me, I never figured out why we sat outside on rainy days like that. My mother told me once, “It’s because we grew up without air conditioning.” She shrugged.”It’s just what people do. Watch the rain fall.”
But, you know what I think? I don’t think it has anything to do with air conditioning. Because I’ve got all the air conditioning I can stand. I’ve also got satellite television, three computers, fast internet, and a cellphone smarter than me.
And yesterday, I just sat on the porch.
Illustration by Olivia Moore