Another rainy morning and I was getting weary of the gloom. It’s wasn’t normal for the area, and it was messing with my mood. I live in the desert for a reason–lots of sunshine and light.
“Feels like we’re back in Seattle,” I groaned.
Ben glanced at me, then looked back at the road. The windshield wipers were having a hard time of it–they’d been so old and dry that they split and after a few swipes they just flapped and smeared across the glass. “Yeah,” he agreed. “It’s been a while since we’ve had to drive in this crap. I’d rather have snow.”
“Bite your tongue!” I cried. “Don’t give it any ideas.”
“I don’t know–the weather imp?”
Ben laughed good-naturedly, but didn’t look away from the road ahead. People in the desert don’t know how to drive in the rain, especially a rain coming down in sheets like this. “The hardpan won’t be able to suck this up,” he remarked. “Another few minutes, and we’re in for some flooding.”
I leaned closer to the glass, trying to make out the landscape through the water. “Are we going to make it home?”
“No.” He made an abrupt turn off the main street and headed uphill. We hadn’t gone far past the intersection when we heard the rush of water in the street behind us. He stopped in the middle of the road, and we looked back in time to see a pickup being washed down the street. It crashed into a power pole, and the car swimming through the steam behind it crashed into its back end.
“My God, Benny!” My heart was pounding, and I felt my eyes bulging. “We were just–“
Ben put the car in gear and kept driving for higher ground. We were both aware that water could swoop down on us at any second–there was nothing to stop it. Ben was banking on the sewer system–which had obviously overflowed behind us–not filling above us until we were past it.
He made another turn. Water was overflowing sewer drains now, and the street we had just pulled off quickly became a waterfall.
“The cars down there are going to be underwater,” I sobbed.
“So is the house,” Ben added.
“Still want to argue about climate change?”
Ben looked like he might get pissed, but then his features softened and he pulled me close for a quick hug. Then he patted my head and drove carefully down the road to the next intersection.
It, too, was a waterfall. The flood water roared past, pushing its way into the roads on either side and into the yards of the homes on each corner. Ben put the car in reverse and backed up a few hundred feet to avoid getting caught in the current.
We were under a canopy of tree branches, but they weren’t enough to keep us from being pounded by the deluge. I prayed they wouldn’t break off and crash down on us. Ben must have decided the risk was real, and he backed up a little more.
Now all I had to worry about was whether the whole tree might fall. “What’ll we do?” I asked.
“Wait.” Ben shrugged. “It can’t rain forever.”
“That’s what Noah said.”