Musings from the ever-changing, ever-amazing and occasionally ever-baffling Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Here Comes the Rain Again

At the risk of dating myself I will share that I've always loved The Eurythmics, and have in particular always thought the song "Here Comes the Rain Again" lovely. I've been humming it all morning, people,  and I bet I'm not the only one - because it's finally raining in Fort Mac!

The past few weeks have been some of the driest I remember. My yard went from spring soggy to mildly damp to dry to desert crispy. It was not a pleasant transition. The trees and lawn were crying out for water, and even regular watering wasn't helping them much.

Even worse this dry weather has allowed wildfires that normally would have remained small and contained to grow into massive monsters of flame and smoke. It seemed the Richardson fire grew in size every day until the numbers and statistics were simply astonishing. Largest fire in Alberta in 50 years - and maybe ever. A fire larger than some countries.

I don't know if this rain is hitting the Richardson fire, but I can already see this city breathing a deep sigh of relief. I think we've been wishing for rain for so long, because even if it doesn't extinguish any fires perhaps it will help to contain growth of the fires and prevent new ones. It's such a pleasant change to wake up to the sound and smell of rain instead of the stench of forest fire smoke and ash on my car. I practically danced around the house this morning, not a rain dance but a celebrate-the-rain dance.

I know one typically doesn't wish for this kind of weather, but I hope it rains for days. I hope it rains hard and long and soaks every living thing in northern AB. I hope it touches the edges of the Richardson fire and allows those exhausted, brave firefighters to gain the upper hand. I hope it makes this city as green and lush as it usually is this time of year.

We often forget that we are quite utterly at the mercy of the elements. Despite our fancy cars, electronics, and other technology we cannot control the weather. We simply have to accept it as it comes, and have faith that eventually whatever weather we wish would arrive (a warm spell in winter, or some rain in a desperately dry spring) will do so. Today the collective wishes of Fort Mac were heard and the heavens opened. I'm not sure I've ever seen a more welcome sight. Here comes the rain, people. Enjoy it!

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