Ilfracombe Inkling: Better than no wet season at all

Joanne Robertson

I’m sitting here listening to the rain on the roof.

I listened to the rain as I fell asleep last night and woke to the sound of rain this morning.

It has continued to rain off and on all day, mostly on.

I can’t remember the last time we had such a prolonged stretch of rain.

For three days, we were gazing up at storm clouds, feeling the change in the air, watching the weather radar on the internet — and swallowing our disappointment when we had mostly spits and misses.

The forecast called for the best chance of rain before the end of the wet season later in the week, which was pushed back to the weekend.

The rain reports started coming into the ‘Who Got the Rain’ website, thick and fast, and our hopes rose accordingly.

That ‘best chance’ resulted in 11 mm of rain by Sunday, which was better than nothing but not likely to carry us through the winter.

It looked like another wet season was going to pass us by.

Then Sunday night the heavens finally opened up and we heard the glorious sound of rain on the roof.

Because it’s been gentle, the rain has been soaking into the ground instead of running over it, straight into the waterways which carry it away from us.

We’re at the top of the watershed between Longreach and Barcaldine here, which means we don’t get any water runoff from our neighbours, but they get runoff from us.

Sunday morning my husband heard a forecaster say it would be ‘hard to find a place in Queensland that won’t get rain in the next 24 hours’.

Certainly, our corner of it enjoyed rain all day.

I only hope the rest of those in Outback Queensland who have been left out also had the benefit of some decent rain.

We were up to 70 mm by supper time Sunday, the best fall we’ve received in a very long time.

We’re hopeful it will see us through the winter without having to hand feed the stock which remains.

You don’t realise you’ve been kind of holding your breath all summer, waiting for the wet season that never seems to arrive until it finally does.

Then you let out a long, slow breath and feel the easing of the weight on your shoulders.

Another wave of rain is washing over the roof as I finish and there’s no describing the feelings of immense wonder and relief that well up inside.

It may be rather late in the season, but it is better than no wet season at all.