It’s wet, wet, wet here in Nelson Mandela Bay. Beautiful rain is falling even as I write this post. So far, we have had 44mm of rainfall in the past 24 hours – and that is amazing.
If you live in a country where you complain about the rain then you may not understand just what joy the sound of raindrops can bring.
The Eastern Cape of South Africa is pretty arid, and droughts are common.
Nelson Mandela Bay metro in particular has faced the threat of Day Zero, the day that no water comes out of the taps, for more than a year.
Already we’re restricted to 50 litres per person per day – although it’s impossible for the municipality to police this effectively.
The region’s supply dams are dangerously shallow, and the water level in the biggest of them is so low that no more drinkable water can be extracted.
What makes it even better is that the rain is forecast to continue today, tomorrow and the next day.
The farmers in this region desperately need rain.
Last year we decided to invest in three 5,000 litre water tanks, rigged up to our household plumbing so that we could rely less on the metro as a source of clean, fresh water.
Unfortunately, due to the drought, we haven’t often seen the tanks full. This week, they are.
Having grown up in Scotland, where I remember more wet days than any other, it was weird at first to live in a country with so much sunshine.
Heck, it’s so sunny that this part of South Africa is even called the Sunshine Coast.
Now, though, I am deeply grateful for any and all raindrops.
The gorgeous sound they make on a tin roof.
The fresh smell they leave in the air.
The glistening prisms they create on leaves.
The ripples when you splash through a puddle.
The misty grey light that softens our view of the world outside.
Rainfall is a soothing sensory blanket for the soil … and for the soul.
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