“Raining!” Kiwi shouted, her face beaming and shower-splattered. “Raining! Raining!”
As she ran, her joy in the rain was contagious. “It’s raining!” I echoed, laughing.
It rained this weekend—barely, but anything to quench our burning state’s thirst is welcome. As huge swaths of Oregon burned this summer, we played indoors, asked school to cancel outdoor recess, canceled trips. The inconveniences we endured from smoke-filled air are nothing in comparison to the communities ravaged by forest fire.
So as we skipped and stomped in the shallowest of puddles, the rain felt healing—like the most welcome weather in the world.
Rain brings good luck
We were at a dear friend’s wedding when it rained. The ceremony was outside, and all the white folding chairs were wet.
The day reminded me of my own wedding, nearly nine years ago. It had rained then, too, and I worriedly watched the clouds as I got my makeup done that morning. The skies cleared right before the ceremony, though, and the bridesmaids and I didn’t end up needing the brightly colored umbrellas I’d hastily bought at the grocery store.
Friends, family and even the stylist at the salon assured me it was good luck to have rain on your wedding day. I have no idea if that’s a legit belief, or if they told me just to make me feel better, but I’ve held onto that reassurance since. It seems to have rung true, anyway.
So I repeated the saying at my friend’s wedding. “It’s good luck,” I said of the rain to anyone who squinted at the sky or tried to shield their hair from the wet.
I don’t really believe in luck (or maybe that’s just because I’ve never felt lucky, always losing at Bingo and forever waiting for my name to be drawn in some contest). But I didn’t need superstition to tell me that rain was good.
Relief from wildfires
As we drove home from the wedding, Peeper looked out the back of the car window. “Is it raining at the fire?” she asked. “I mean, does the rain go that far?”
She’s been aware of the Eagle Creek fire, mostly because the smoky haze has meant she can’t play outside. But she’s picked up on it in other ways. She hears when Eric and I discuss what percentage of the burn is contained, and she definitely noticed when I just couldn’t continue reading her the book she’d picked out because it was about a family of bears trying to escape a forest fire. (Bad timing, kid.)
A drizzle is not going to stop the 32,000-acre blaze that was set by an irresponsible, careless teenager. It will not undo damage that will endure for a generation or more. But it’s a start.
I hope a little rain gives firefighters a tiny bit of breathing room. I hope it clears the air, literally, for the communities and animals living near the blaze. I hope it prevents more trees from catching fire.
I’ll welcome the weather, whether it’s lucky or not, with the abandon of a toddler finding joy in the rain.
PS – Looking for how to help with the Eagle Creek Fire? Take a look at the Friends of the Gorge how to help page.