July 10, 2003 ~ Like the Woodland Creatures
I went out the door and up the stairs, leaned against the wall and looked north, where a black wall of clouds was brewing. Thunder rolled over the mountains. It was three-thirty in the afternoon. The air was thick with humidity and the heat nearly unbearable.
One of the students passed me on his way downstairs. "Hey, you know everything, right?" he asked.
I laughed. "That is debatable. What do you want to know?"
He gave me a very serious look. "Is it going to rain?"
"Oh yes. Most definitely."
He frowned. "I was afraid you'd say that."
Two students jokingly nick-named me "The Oracle" earlier this week. Some people are taking that title a wee bit too seriously.
By 5:15, it still had not rained. But I knew that it would soon.
"I'm off on a hike, have a good dinner!" I said as I left for my dinner break.
"Oh, but a thunderstorm's coming; you'll get soaked," my supervisor protested.
"Oh, I know, but a little rain won't hurt me. I think I've got it timed just right."
"And you're in a dress!"
"Eh, yeah. I hike in a skirt or a dress all the time though. It's not a big deal."
"Well, then, don't get struck by lightning!"
I laughed, promised I'd try my very best not to, and ducked out the door.
The wind picked up as I hiked down past the Pavilion, the air became significantly cooler, and I could smell the ozone. Right as I came off of the trail next to the pond, it started to sprinkle. Little water rings spread across the pond, and, right as I reached the tree-cover, the rain got heavier. During the first minutes of a storm, it stays dry under the leaves. I was running a little late, though. Perhaps a minute. I hastened my pace a bit, rushing down the trail, head ducked to avoid the rain, and I reached the meditation hut just as the downpour hit and the tree-cover was no longer protection. I didn't have a single drop on me.
I grinned and settled into one of the windowsills to watch the storm. It's an open-air building, so there is not glass in the windows; the breeze blows through. The trees were thrashing about, and the rain was a thick wall. The roar of the water hitting the roof was constant, and sat back, utterly relaxed, and started singing some of my favorite old folk songs to myself.
I sat there for an hour, while the storm passed, and finally the rain stopped completely, as I expected it would, and I climbed down from my perch and hiked back through the forest.
"How are you not drenched!?" My supervisor asked as I walked in to the reading.
I grinned. "I'm like the little woodland creatures. I know where to hide to sit out the storm."
She laughed. "But not 15 minutes after you left the office there was a torrential downpour!"
I gave in and explained about the meditation hut. "You have such incredible luck." Her tone said that she wasn't simply referring to my dry state that evening, but to all of the other instances that she had witnessed, and perhaps even beyond that.
And, at the risk of sounding sappy. I've been thinking about how right she is, though I wouldn't call it luck. I feel incredibly blessed. Yes, sometimes things go wrong, money is almost always tight or non-existent, there are hurts and sadnesses, and a few old aches, but over all I live a very blessed life.
I have an incredible soul mate who fits me so perfectly that I believe he was cut specifically for me. I have several amazing friends whom I can trust completely. And they aren't just casual acquaintances, but very close friends, people whom I would never have cause to doubt, people who I can be completely true with and never have to worry about what they think of me. People who, when the money is too tight or the sadnesses creep in or things go wrong as they do, they will pull me through it. I have a job that I love, and I work with very interesting, intelligent people. I live in a place so green and vibrant that it hurts, with such beauty everywhere, and plenty of opportunity to go off exploring. I feel very in touch with the natural world, with the people around me, with my food, with my community. I feel that my life is full of love. And if that isn't blessed, then what is?