Sunday, March 30, 2008

Heart Like a Rain Gauge

Ace climbs water towers and sets water pressure for small towns. His van is packed with tools and straps and ladders and gauges, including a Geiger counter. He showed me how some of gauges worked. The indicator needles jumped and held. "See these?" he said. "They don't lie."

I was amazed. Surely those things lie. Somehow. I keep testing my tire pressure over and over because I usually don't credit, at first, what the gauge says. But Ace makes a living by trusting his gauges, so he must be right: What gauges say is the reality.

Here's my rain gauge, sort of like a footlong shot glass, and its view of what fell last night: one and one-half inches of rain. This isn't good news for this part of Missouri. But it's a reality. Plans must be made for the rivers rising again this week. People are murmuring "Flood of '93," "Flood of '82." Makes an individual feel very small and feeble, and makes the heart beat harder.

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