Tuesday, July 28, 2009

"Raindrops are falling on my head..."

A steady rain has fallen here at the northern end of southern nowhere for the better part of the last eighteen hours, and the weather guesser says he thinks it will continue to do so for the rest of the week. The persistent precipitation has not, and will not be allowed to, dampen the Colonel’s spirits for the following reasons:

First Hug. Number One son and his bride, she of the highly exalted and fiercely protected position of Provider of Grandsons, are staying with the comely and kind-hearted Miss Brenda and the Colonel while they prepare for transition to their own abode. As a result, the Big House here at Eegeebeegee, capital of the virtual republic, The Tallahatchie Free State, has perceptively shrunken in its accommodation of the Colonel’s two grandsons, and the hope of 21st Century civilization, Caleb and Taylor. Caleb and his “Pop”, as the Colonel has chosen to be addressed by his granchillin’ (in tribute to my grandfather, Vernon “Pop” Gregory), are, thanks to much time spent together in the first year and a half of his life, bonded buddies who share loving hugs at greeting and farewell. Different story with his little brother. Taylor demonstrates perhaps a much more finely tuned judgment of character than his big brother and has heretofore refused, rebuffed, and otherwise denied the gruff ole Colonel’s request for a hug. Until this morning. Mr. T graced the Colonel with a warm, albeit brief, hug at first greeting this morning. Heart melting stuff—even for the man curmudgeoned before his time. Let it rain!

Filling the Lake. Number Two son and the Colonel belong to a brainless brotherhood known as duck hunters. Said brotherhood participates in perhaps the most idiotic and masochistic endeavor (outside of following Ole Miss football) known to man. Duck hunting is best described as interminable hours of cold, wet, windy, muddy misery, infrequently interspersed with brief moments of feathery delight. Said pursuit is made even more idiotic and masochistic when our ever-changeable climate produces years of below average rainfall necessitating arduous decoy bag-hauling and brush-busting to reach shrunken water holes to which a paltry few waterfowl venture from the flyway to frequent. The best duck seasons are those preceded by prodigious precipitation that fills our local flood-control reservoir to overflowing. Let it rain!

Tempering the Temperature. The Colonel’s temper has, with the accumulation of orbits round Ole Sol, cooled significantly from the white hot intemperance of youth to the simmering stew of older age; except when the outside temperature climbs above ninety. There was a time when I gloried in a bath of sweat while laboring or working out in temps pushing triple digits. Not so, no mo’. Interrupt the Colonel on a hot summer day whilst in the midst of a strenuous task and you are likely to witness an eruption rivaling Vesuvius, complete with explosive molten exhalations and fiery rain. Not bragging, mind you—the foregoing is more of an embarrassing admission. Needless to say, the Colonel’s temper has embarrassed him fairly regularly during the first stifling hot days of this summer. A rain-bearing cold front is, therefore, a welcome relief to the Colonel as well as to those around him. Let it rain!

Of course, I might get a case of the “red eye” if my driveway gets washed out.
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