PANORAMA - Come rain or shine

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MORNING RAIN – Raindrops cluster on the folds of a flower during a recent morning rain.

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DOUBLE DEER – Double deer do a double take as they peer from beneath a tree at the lush shades of springtime green in the foothills of the Blue Mountains.

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BICYCLES AND BROKEN CLOUDS – The sky begins to clear after a spring rain, revealing fragments of color and fair conditions for bicycles under the broken blue.

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RAIN PAIN – An Enterprise relay runner covers her eyes to help stop the rain pain during warm-ups at the Carnival of Speed.

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WATER BRIDGES – Raindrops populate tiny grass bridges.

This springtime in the Walla Walla Valley has been a fickle one.

In April, for the first time in its 72-year history, Mac-Hi's Carnival of Speed was canceled. The announcement on the Milton-Freewater Unified School District website sited "dangerous weather conditions".

Contrary to popular belief, we're not all made of sugar and spice. But that doesn't make us invincible. Add a relentless, driving wind to the mix, and those once harmless and gentle drops show a darker side.

One that hurts.

One that stings the skin like little falling nails, batters the eyes and soaks the body to the bone.

During the last week, nearly 2-inches of rain have fallen. Not with the driving force of early spring, but certainly with a greater fullness. That's closing in on half a glass - half a glass that has wreaked havoc on the normal flow of late spring.

Half full?

Half empty?

It's only rain.

Most of the time it's gentle. Quiet. Soothing.

It grows things and makes the world multi-shades of green.

And when the clouds break and the sun comes through, well, there's no better color.

With summer waiting just over the horizon the twilight of spring draws near. And with it, rain or shine, will be the coming heat.

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