Sunday, March 12, 2006

Rainbows

The weekend has been stormy. The clouds gather in the south or in the west and fill up with precipitation and blow their way into her world, one gigantic electrical storm after another, full of rain and fury. Eight inches of rain in three days is a lot, even for this part of the Country, and venturing outside, even to the local McDonald's for a McGriddle on Sunday morning becomes a study in geography, planning the streets least likely to be flooded, coursing away from the river and, eyes peeled for signs of trouble, standing water not yet cordoned off by the local police department.

With all that anger built up in the clouds, she contemplates the fact that all she has found this weekend is peace. The pace has been slow. Nothing much seemed a necessity. A trip to a near-by book store to stock in substantial reading material turned out to be the only drive she took, the books being more important than milk or eggs.

She wanders to her cabinet, peers in, finds nothing of interest. Even less interesting is the refrigerator, but she puts eating on hold and curls up in the rocking reclining love seat by the big front window, turns on the lamp situated in perfect reading position at her right shoulder, kicks up the foot rest and soon becomes absorbed in a good book, sipping a diet Pepsi straight from the bottle, absently stroking the head of her Dachshund, Annie, who is snuggled between her and the armrest.

When a flash of close lightning interrupts her, she jumps at the same time the dog does, dropping the book, waits impatiently for the loud thunder that will cause the house to rattle and shake, and she is not disappointed. She looks out of the window in amazement at the hard rain that is so thick it is nearly white, like a translucent shower curtain, making the walls of the apartment building across the street seem dream-like and wavy. If the temperature was forty degrees colder, it would be a blinding blizzard-like snow falling and the effect would be similar.

Suddenly the curtain is raised, and only drizzle remains. To the east the black clouds boil and churn, to the west, the sun is dazzling and she knows there will be a rainbow. Not only is she sure of that fact, she knows, after all these years of being rooted in the same spot on this earth, exactly where to look for it.

She and Annie kick down the foot rest and go to the front door, knowing how fleeting the colors can be, step out onto the front porch of her little brick house and turn toward the southeast and there it is. A rainbow brighter than any she has ever seen. The colors are not terminating into the trees on the horizon but are coming straight to the ground in front of the treeline, a multicolored explanation point at the end of the day, and that is something she has never seen before. She can truly see the end of the rainbow. And as quickly as it formed, it is gone, before she can truly even absorb the magnificence of it, reminding her how precious every second is.

1 comment:

Tracy said...

Ah, now you're seeing rainbows. Much better drugs!