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I seem to be constantly wishing for rain in my life. My poor husband puts up with my endless plea to the universe, ‘We need rain.’ He calls it, whinging, nagging, persistent and irritatingly repetitive.

I am a gardener and from the country. I have lived through droughts and floods, but I continue to have a need for more rain.

The weather man on television is berated every night as he predicts the rain I badly need.

‘Why doesn’t he look out the window? He is useless. What would he know? Why doesn’t he observe the ants, birds, clouds, cockroaches or any other small brained thing that would do a better job at predicting the weather?’ I scream at my poor husband, who is deaf, thankfully and feels no need to respond!

I have lived through massive wet seasons in the Gulf country and have witnessed neighbours and friends suffering enormous losses of stock and property. I understand Mother Nature is not about delivering to a whinging gardener on the Gold Coast. I have never been impacted by serious flooding and my heart breaks for the people who have endured such devastation.

However, at ‘McAllister’ in Northern Queensland we always knew that the rain would stop and then we had a dry season. Then our house dam always ran out of water in October, this was a dry and hot time of the year. Then my pleas would start again. ‘We need rain,’ but my plea was for the stock as well as my house dam and garden and my sanity!

(Back of Beyond,

We moved to Toowoomba in 1986, into the worst drought this beautiful city had ever experienced. You can only imagine my whinging then. Paying for water use certainly makes on very careful. The garden was kept alive with recycled water from the washing machine. I now lived in the Garden City but struggled to have a garden!


We now live on the Gold Coast and my water tanks are empty…AGAIN!

Today it rained…..only a little, five mls, but the garden is smiling and so am I, much to the relief of my husband.

Today is Anzac Day. A day of sombre remembrance. The grey skies reflect our mood as we remember the sacrifice of so many of our brave people. Today it was as if the dark sky was weeping.

We will always remember them.

Anzac Day also is the day I lost a very dear nursing friend several years ago. She was also a gardener from country regions and constantly wishing for rain.

I miss her very much.

(Innocent Nurses Abroad,

I often think of Dorothea Mackellar and the wonderful words in her poem ‘I Love a Sunburnt Country’. We live in a diverse and challenging country but what beauty she delivers.

Rain is life. Nothing can survive without water. To me there isn’t anything quite like the smell of the parched earth after rain or witnessing dry and stressed leaves on a fruit tree respond immediately to the precious rain drops, and the sound on a corrugated roof as the first drops splatter down from the clouds.

I promise I will cease my whinging as I await the next fall which will hopefully fill my water tanks!

PS I understand the heartbreak of floods and don’t take it lightly when people suffer from an excess of rain. This is my personal experience and I have been lucky to escape the tragedy of flooding.

Jenny Old AUTHOR

‘Innocent Nurses Abroad’

‘Back of Beyond’ Facebook


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