Thursday, August 31, 2006

Standing Up In The Falling Down

Connoisseurs of fine irony will appreciate the fact that every time I stepped outside the house today it bucketed down with rain. This on the very same day we were informed that we're finishing up the driest winter on record.

Oh, my sides.

As I've mentioned before, rain is A Good Thing here in Western Australia, helping to bail out farmers facing devastating crop failures across the state. It is, however, A Bad Thing if you're behind the wheel at all because, for some unfathomable reason, rain makes Perth people forget how to drive.

A simple ten-minute trip stretched out to a tooth-grinding half an hour for me this morning. It's lucky my son had nodded off in the back seat, as my language did (on occasion) lapse into gutter parlance. Alright then, if there was such a thing as a celestial censor, tasked with bleeping out my invective, it would have sounded like a fleet of trucks backing up.

This would, of course, only have made matters worse, with my lobotomised fellow drivers grinding to a halt to look for the reversing vehicles.

The worst thing about it was that I was late to pick up my daughter from kindergarten. It goes without saying that any parent thinking of their child sitting alone and friendless long after their friends have scampered off to Vegemite sandwiches and The Wiggles on telly would be distressed. Garnish that with a look from her teacher that informed me in no uncertain terms that 'I was stuck in traffic' is only one step up from 'The dog ate my homework' and it's little wonder my mood was blacker than the sky.

Thankfully my daughter is a fabulous antidote to grimness. Taking one look at the weather, she informed me that I shouldn't worry that 'the clouds are crying', because - tilting her head back - she was going to catch all the water in her mouth.

Tomorrow we're touring rural WA, helping farmers irrigate their fields ...


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