Hurray - I Mean, Boo for Rain!

It was rather amazing to wake up yesterday and discover that it had rained in the night. Of course, I had heard a rumor that it might rain, but it's one thing to hear a rumor, and another thing all together to see the ground all wet.

Since we have moved to California, the importance of rain has taken a whole new level. This area gets only 11.23" of rainfall a year, and most of it comes in the winter, as shown by the graph below. Now, you would think that with such a small amount of rain falling in Fresno in general, every shower would be celebrated by those living here and the surrounding countryside. You would think that Rain Happy Dances would break out at the first drop hitting the ground. However, I am learning that this is not so.

It seems that every type of agriculture needs rain at different times. Conversely, there are times that different types of agriculture do not want rain. For example, right now the raisins are drying out the fields, and when drying raisins get wet, they get moldy. Here is a picture from today's Fresno Bee showing the raisins drying on their paper in the sun. I am told that when they are dry, they roll paper up like a big cinnamon roll and take them off to package them. (Which actually makes raisins more appealing to me to think of them in a "cinnamon roll" context.)

Cotton and hay are the same way - they get damaged when they get wet.
So, in other words, there are obviously good days and bad days for rain for each type of grower. I imagine that believing farmers probably would just like to submit their calendars to God with the "Good to Have Rain" days marked with happy faces, and the "Bad to Have Rain" marked with big, fat frownies.

Which surely has God shaking his head, and muttering "You can't win for losing down when it comes to rain in California," because of course these days overlap each other.

It's a good thing that God has this all under control. Between the raisins and the cotton, harvest time and sowing time, and the just and the unjust, rain is a lot more complicated than I thought it was.

flower picture by eleda 1 (Creative Commons License: Attribution, Non-Commercial)
Open on Flickr

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