My Turn: Making it rain

Like most people with connections to the land, I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to make it rain.

Let me tell you, it is nothing short of exhausting.

At any given moment, I can report to you the current relative humidity, as well as anticipated chances for rain for the next 10 days. I know where to find the best interactive radar maps, and I am a regular visitor to drought prediction sites. (You may have even heard my whoop of joy when one of these sites for the first time this week showed New Mexico as “drought remains, but improves.”)

When rain does fall at my house, it is measured not in inches, or even tenths, but in meticulous, desperate hundredths.

I scan the sky a thousand times a day, willing clouds to appear. I barely flinch when flies gnaw tiny chunks of flesh from my legs, because I cling to the old wives’ tales that promise biting flies mean rain is on the way, just as a dust devil observed on a cloudless day practically guarantees I’ll need my umbrella within 24 hours.

If you see me and I am tired, now you know why.

Rain-making is very hard work.

Betty Williamson was much happier before meteorologists invented “the dry line.” You may reach her at

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