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‘Some rain must fall …’

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By RALPH HARDIN

Evening Times Editor T he renowned recording artist of the early 20th century Ella Fitzgerald had a popular tune back in the day titled, “Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall,” she sang in a duet with Bill Kenny of The Ink Spots, recorded in 1944. It went on to be a number one hit in the Pop charts. I actually heard it once in a Steve Martin film and instantly connected with it.

Not like in a depressing sort of way, but rather in a truth-seeking fashion. You and I and everyone are going to have good days where things are going well. But it’s important to know that we will all also have bad days. That’s the message of the song. As you can probably already imagine, even without knowing the lyrics to the song, it’s a sad song about loss and heartbreak and how “some folks can lose the blues in their hearts” while others, like the singers in the song, the rain can be “too much, too much falling” in their lives.

As a kid, I had trouble wrapping my head around the expression, “When it rains, it pours.” I thought it was dumb. I mean, of course it pours when it rains. That’s what rain does! It’s right there in that nursery rhyme, “It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring.” But I eventually figured it out. Like too much rain falling in the life of Ella and Bill and their stormy dying love, too much “rain” in our lives can be overwhelming.

I’m a pretty positive guy. I truly do believe that even when times are hard, everything will pretty much get worked out in the end one way or another. I don’t mean that everything is going to be fine (although it usually is). I mean it in a “This too shall pass” sort of way. Think about the worst things you’ve been through in your life. Well, yes, it was probably very tough and might have seemed like the pain or sadness or anger or grief would be there forever, and in some ways, that might be true, but you’re still here. Is it easy? No, but like the rain that falls from the sky, the rain of your sadness eventually dries up … mostly.

Well, I had quite a bit of rain in my life over the past week. No, nothing too tragic, but just some reminders that no matter what you convince yourself, you’re going to have these little hiccups along the way.

The first, and worst, issue I had to deal with was my transmission going out in my old truck. At first, I thought it was just my daughter’s inexperience at driving that was making my truck not wanting to get up and go, but then as I was driving it to church Sunday before last, I noticed that it was doing that with me as well. After getting home (I was glad to make it) I checked and the dipstick on the transmission fluid indicator was bone dry.

I borrowed my wife’s car, went and got a jug of transmission fluid and filled it until there was the tell-tale light red residue on the dipstick. Problem solved! Or so I thought. The next day, there was a distinct sticky red puddle under my truck. It was, it turned out, not problem solved. Still very much problem … Well, I took it to “my guy.” I try to fix stuff myself when I can, but when it comes to something like a leaking transmission, I definitely need “a guy” because I am not “that guy” for anything on that level.

Because they were backed up at the shop, I was without a vehicle, reduced to bumming a ride with my son or borrowing my mom’s car like it was 1990 all over again. Fortunately, it’s back to running great again. Unfortunately, my wallet is $700 lighter than it was. I got even more vehicle-related “rain” when my wife’s Explorer acted like it didn’t want to crank this past Sunday, also after church (maybe I should stop going to church? … I kid, I kid). And then it did not crank when we tried to go eat lunch after going home to change clothes.

Luckily, it was “only” the battery and not something more involved, like the starter or alternator. I actually can handle changing a car battery. So, this time, it was off to AutoZone for a new battery. I got took the old one, got the new one, put it in and, as I explained to my wife, “It cranked when I crunk it,” and that seems to have done the trick. However, batteries ain’t cheap (what is these days?), so that was another unexpected hundred buck out of the till, which is always running low this time of year.

We also found out the car we were planning on getting from a family member for my daughter now that she’s about a week away from being able to drive by herself needs at best a new timing belt and at worst a new engine. Sigh …

Not gonna lie. I’m ready for it to rain on someone else for a little while.

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