Florida is still strange to me, a transplant from Tennessee. We catapult from our mild version of a winter to (this year) a warmer spring than most...a good many days reaching the high 80s.
But I'm learning the dance, slowly. (Which is a good thing, judging by my lack of rhythm in the real dance department!)
Yesterday, we got 30 minutes of a heavy, soaking, delicous rain. We sat on the back porch (I simply can't adapt to calling it a lanai, ha) and watched the show. You could almost audibly hear the plants drinking! The newly re-sprouted moringa trees were dancing, the willows across the swale nodding and curtsying. Occasional thunder rolls and misty gusts paired with a long hard shower serenaded us. Pure delight!
As other areas of the country look with dread at more water headed their way, our seasons here seem upside down, as if Florida can't make up its mind whether it's closer to the northern or southern hemisphere some years. Our supposed wet season sometimes begins mid-summer right along with the timing of "hurricane season," both of which are anybody's guess for the weatherman or gardener. A couple years I've lived here, the wet season was a no show, and drought sorely depleted the water tables. Hopes for relief continued to be just hopes for a couple years running. Other years, a rowboat would have come in handy.
For so many, recent disasters have brought personal "dry seasons" and a flood of troubles.
We're praying for our friends (you) who are in areas desperately needing some water, and also for those who've had more than their share of it. I can't wrap my head around the devastation shared by many states. Tornadoes, flooding, wind damage, loss of loved ones and homes or property. They're scenarios so varied, and in many cases replete with stalwart volunteerism and proof that community and good neighbors are not yet extinct, good hearted folks still helping shoulder tragedies together. It's the bittersweet reality of survival.
And I still can't get my head around the losses.
How can we help? Maybe much the same way we take charge of our own limitations of situation and finances, by changing things one action at a time and being empowered in the smaller realm even when we can't seem to budge the larger. By helping out in some way because it's the right thing to do, and not pass on by without participating. And cementing the concept of Neighbor and good will. Those single acts of neighborliness add up. A single act of help can feel, in all its smallness, like the refreshing 30 minute shower we had in the midst of a run of hot, dry days.
Isn't it interesting how we come together in an entirely different way when the power goes out, laundry and showers are no longer taken for granted, the freezers full of meat need to be eaten (neighborhood BBQ!), and cutting up trees and cleaning up debris have replaced prime time reality shows?
Our hearts are heavy for the losses so many people are experiencing recently. We're encouraged to see the emerging backbone and strength of community.
I can't think of anything that weighs as true a coinage as a real friend. Whatever we're doing here in our homes, gardens, lives, means little without that currency.