Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Hot, Hot, Hot

It's the number one topic on the news, the heat of this summer and the drought that is gripping the middle sections of the country.

I opened the door before seven this morning and the heat met me. "Hello. Are you ready for another day of dealing with me?" it seemed to say.

Thankfully, a few raindrops escaped from their prison in a cloud and became a welcome interruption to my morning coffee on the terrace. Just think of it. Rain, a welcome interruption.

How quickly we become attuned to weather. When temperatures are pretty normal we go about our days as if there is no weather. We run the A/C a bit here and there; we fiddle with draftiness of the vents in the dashboard of our cars. We comment and complain.

But an unsettling sense of impending disaster lingers nearby this summer. The corn in Huron County, curled and spikey, still holds a bit of promise. Rain would unfurl those tightened leaves and lengthen the stalks, maybe. August is coming on and the crops that looked so good in late May are suffering.

But we can't complain, us Thumb people. The wheat crop came off and looked good. Green beans and tomatoes from the garden taste so good.

Still, the drought pictures from other parts of the country are scary. Cattle being sent to market for lack of water and feed. Corn and soybeans withered, fields abandoned. We know we see the worst on the news -- news feeds are like that now -- yet there is a creeping worry that clings to each dry day.

I remember a friend from years gone by who talked about how important agriculture is to everyone. "Just stop eating for a couple of days. Take away the food that the farms provide and see how important you think it is then," he used to say.

This summer, the drought is giving us that picture. Let's hope for rain.

Copyright 2012
Wanda Hayes Eichler

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