Published in the Rains County Leader on February 4, 2020:
Punxsutawney Phil didn’t see his shadow this morning (Sunday), and that’s supposed to mean an early Spring. I guess he was right. It’s 79 and sunny in our part of the world this beautiful Groundhog’s Day. The boy next door is playing on his trampoline in shorts and no shirt, and the neighbors on the hill are having a great time racing each other around the circle on their four wheelers. And seven deer wandered across our back yard throughout the afternoon. I’m not sure what kind of goodies they were finding under the carpet of fallen leaves that escaped mulching when the lawn mower threw a crucial bolt, but they seemed to think whatever they were finding was quite tasty. I’m just glad they didn’t find the lone daffodil that is blooming in the front yard.
I love Spring, and I’d be sitting outside to write this except that the sunshine makes it almost impossible to see the laptop screen. Besides, the warmth would make me sleepy and I’d never finish in time for the start of the big game. I really should take advantage, though, because it won’t last long. Some people, including the weatherman, are determined to hang on to winter for a while longer. The temperature is supposed to start falling tomorrow, and by Wednesday night it’s supposed to be 30 degrees. Precipitation is also predicted that day, so there’s talk about ice and snow, and we all know what a frenzy that causes in Texas.
It appears that my Christmas cactus isn’t ready to let go of winter either. It has one more bloom it’s trying to push out before it goes into hibernation for a while. If it opens before the freeze gets the daffodil, the blooms will make an interesting picture posed beside one another.
There are those who would credit climate change with these schizophrenic weather patterns, but I’ve seen unpredictable weather events all my life. On Christmas Day when I was sixteen, I went outside in shirt sleeves and greeted my cousin with a snowball I scraped up from some leftover snow in a shady spot. And a few years ago when a drought had lowered the level of the area lakes to the point that experts said it would take at least five years to refill them, a rainy Spring filled them to overflowing in less than five months.
I’m not sure that Puxatawny Phil worries about whether his predictions come true. I’m guessing as long as he continues to get fresh fruit and veggies in his bowl, he couldn’t care less. On the other hand, I wouldn’t want to be a weatherman regardless of how much fruit and how many veggies I was paid. No matter what they predict, someone is unhappy – and when their predictions are wrong, everyone is unhappy.
There’s an old saying that everybody complains about the weather but nobody does anything about it. There’s not much that can be done about it except to pray. That’s probably the best thing to do anyway, because He’s the only one that can really do anything about it.
When He utters His voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and He causes the clouds to ascend from the end of the earth; He makes lightning for the rain, and brings out the wind from His storehouses. Jeremiah 10:13