It rained today, a long, long soaking rain. It felt good. Our valley is green because it is watered by dozens of small streams flowing out of the mountains that lie mostly on our eastern flank, and they depend on the winter snows. This year there was a lot of it. Outside this valley to the north, west and south the steeply rolling hills are nearly treeless. Without irrigation the main crop would be sagebrush. In some places that’s mostly what there is, but this is also the land of the Snake and Columbia whose waters have been made to turn desert into productive farm land. Still, we can never forget that we are in are in the high desert of the Intermountain Plateau. Average precipitation around here, apart from the mountains, is between 10 and 15 inches, which is half or less of what one might expect in the Midwest, and a third or less of areas on the East coast. Our dry season will begin in June and we will not expect any significant rainfall again until sometime in September. The biblical references to the early rains and the late rains are very real out here. So today it rained, a beautiful, long soaking rain, and it was good, it was very, very good.