The Warm Rain

You get the good, of course, but don’t forget the downside.

For the past two days, Byron had been receiving texts on his phone about the impending thunderstorms that would devastate the region and turn the area into a swamp. That’s not exactly what the forecasters said, though they certainly implied it.

Halfway into his daily walk, Byron felt the first drops of rain. He knew it was bound to happen on his walk, and the later it was, the less he’d have to walk in it – based on when the storm was scheduled to pass by.

As the drops kept accumulating with each step, Byron had the sense that the entire sky would soon give way on him.

But it wasn’t like that. The rain was warm and inviting, heavy at times but slowing to a drizzle without warning and back to a downpour. It had been a while since Byron had actually been caught in a storm and he was enjoying it. For once, he didn’t have to think about bills and work and the everyday stresses of life. It was like the rain was washing it away, if only for a few moments. His walking pace hadn’t picked up since the rain started, mainly because he was at his optimal pace and didn’t want to alter that.

The rain continued to fall and Byron looked up into it. He tore off his glasses and folded them into his shirt pocket, something he’d never been able to do in his adult life because his eyeglasses were essential for driving and reading. But today, Byron wasn’t reading or driving. Today, he was putting one foot in front of the other on his way home. That’s it. Since he had been walking on this same path, he didn’t even need the glasses to see where he was going because his feet knew the way.

Then just as quick, he pulled his glasses from his pocket and put them back on. Wet and smudged eyeglasses were better than none at all, for it was at that moment that he remembered he was in Texas and coming to a wooded area of the city.

The year before he arrived, there was a massive flood in the area, and the forest area he was now walking through gave up its snakes because their holes filled with water. The snakes found refuge wherever they could, some nearby, some miles away.

So that large stick across the sidewalk, was it a stick or…something else? That’s why those glasses were so important at a time like this. Sure, the warm rain was easing away the stresses of life, but it was also enhancing his fears of unknown wildlife, especially the creepy crawlers.

Byron would still enjoy the warm rain, but he would also see where he was stepping. In Texas, you can never be too careful.


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