It is one o'clock early Tuesday morning here in the Texas Panhandle, and we are finally experiencing the first significant rainfall of the year. The lightning streaks across the dusty red sky, scaring the dogs in the neighborhood. The thunder grumbles back at their barking, like a bear just out of hibernation.
I lean my head out the back door to witness the dots across my patio. The first drops hiss and steam, releasing the heat of the day into the welcoming night. Within seconds the cement is covered with reflective circles of suicidal drops and within minutes, we are flooded. I can't resist stepping out to have a nice summer shower.
The boys are already out there, soaking it in, laughing at each other. Our feet are submerged. We wade through the floating twigs and leaves without much care for the mess. An unseen neighbor lets out a loud whoop of joy, and others are heard laughing at the craziness of it.
We are loathe to force ourselves indoors, but soon enough, we must seek shelter. The torrents are too strong. The flowerbeds are flooded, and the streets are filling. The television is warning us to stay indoors, do not drive across intersections covered in water, take caution with our travel. It is unlikely that we will be going anywhere tonight.
I stand at the front door and spy others leaning out their screen doors just like me. I stretch my hand out to capture rain pouring off the roof and come back with a palm full of muddy water. Finally, the shingles will be showered clean.
I shiver and shake off the beautiful chill.
We leave the doors and windows open.