Personal Journeys with Gramma

Life adventures, inspiration and insight; shared in articles, advice, personal chats and pictures.

Are You Afraid of Mud?

muddyRemember mud?  In our world of asphalt and cement, we forget to think about the power of mud.  We like to imagine mud is a problem only in places far away.  A few homeowners have no choice but to notice mud, because it’s sliding their houses downhill or covering them completely.  To them, mud is a disaster.  Mud and flash floods work together.

Where I live, mud is a mixed blessing.  It means we’ve received more rain than we have in years, which is a nice surprise in a semi-arid climate.  Normally, by this time of year we’re dust.  This year we’re green with weeds.  We began the summer being serenaded by splay-footed toads that croaked with lust as they rushed to beat the mating deadline before returning to the dirt for the winter.  We’re ending summer in a cloud of insects, worrying about the fire danger once all these weeds dry out.

Today I have a meeting with some friends who live on an unpaved road.  When my husband and I first shopped for property, we rode with a real estate agent who was good at forcing his four-wheel-drive truck to slip and slosh through the mud ruts of back roads.  My husband and I didn’t buy a monster truck and as time passed, the precipitation levels in our area dropped.  Humidity hovered around 9%.  We grew complacent.  However, the last time I attempted to exit this same meeting after a rainstorm, I was “treated” to an accidental slalom down a small hill in my little Subaru.  With the prospect of an evening in a muddy ditch all too likely, I didn’t appreciate my ride.  (I made it safely.)

Down the road from us, some neighbors are rebuilding a large earthen dam that washed out in the last deluge.  I hope this one is sturdy once the pond behind it fills, because a car passing just as that dam gives way would probably be washed into a deep arroyo—not my idea of a good time.  Today’s media specialize in alarming people—about storms, floods, political upheaval, tainted food, sharks, disease, etc.  We’re programmed to be afraid.  Those of us who’ve worked in emergency services are programmed to plan for the worst—which means we have to imagine the worst in any situation.  But do we have to fear the worst all the time?  Should I spend my precious time fretting about mud?  Do you?

Note:  The sun came out and I made it to and from my meeting just fine.  Another good worry wasted.

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