In Africa, we don't refer to rain as simply "rain". For some reason, we call it "the rains". I don't know why this is, but maybe it is because the rains have such power over people. If there is no rain, crops fail, animals die and people starve. But, if the rains are too hard, the earth is too dry to take the onslaught of water and erosion occurs, crops are squashed under the weight of the water, and the suffering continues.
Right now, in Zimbabwe, this is exactly what happened. After such a long time of drought and dry, dry, DRY weather, the skies opened up and the RAINS came down. They came and they came and they came. While the maize flats were flattened, the rivers and dams are being filled. Where the earth hasn't been eroded, bits of green is shooting up, giving livestock something to chew on. These are some happy little goats, rabbits, guinea fowl and chickens, let me tell you! Finally, green to eat! They will produce more milk now than at any other time of the year, and for that, we are grateful. And, they will drop manure to be used in the gardens, which is a blessing. All in all, the rains are bringing life back to many.
It's wild, this cycle in life. Everything in moderation, seems to be the cry. Yes, we need the rains, but we need them to come in bits and pieces, not in a huge downpour, day in and day out. We don't know if we should cry or dance. We have rains, which gives us water, which we desperately need. But, we also have devastation, erosion and homeless as their houses were washed away. We take the rains, as we take much of what comes our way - with gratitude mingled with hurt for those who hurt.
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