I don’t like when clichés ring true-it’s like underscoring the fact that everything worth saying has already been said a million times.  Still I can’t help it, so often it is the cliché that first comes to mind.  Like:  When it rains, it pours. In my experience that’s true regardless of whether it’s raining good fortune or bad.  Or, is it only our perception of good or bad fortune that changes?  Rain can be, after all, both good and bad.  Maybe that can even be said for the hurricane.

It was the strangest coincidence, surely, that the very day the three-week-long drought got drenched, little droplets of success began after a drought in both my paying career and my personal life.  When circumstances seem serendipitous, it feels to me, well, eerie.   It makes me wonder if there might be something to all those self-help books and spiritual texts that proclaim the power of envisioning and positive thinking.  Maybe our lives, just like “The Secret” says, are nothing more, or less, than the manifestations of our own thoughts.  What if the old tribal rain dancers really could alter their weather by sheer will and chanting?

And if that’s the case, then we’ve really got things screwed up in the world.  We spend more time, far more time, working, than we do praying or chanting or even just thinking.  We claim that hard work is the way to a successful life and a prosperous future, but, what if we’re wrong?  We’ve made ourselves so busy we’ve hardly any time to consider the question at all.

Surely there exists the perfect synergy of vision, luck, and labor?

Could it mean we need a return to “the simple life” in order to find it?  Is life out here really any simpler?  The simple life is itself something of a cliché, but I’d say it’s also of the variety that rings true.  Still, unlike the romantic image of a simple life in the countryside, it’s not simpler because there’s less work, or because you feel any more in control over things like the weather as you would, say, the traffic.  It’s simpler, I suppose, for the very simple truth that you, me, everyone, everywhere, are immensely affected by our environment.  When your surroundings are chaotic and loud and you are constantly bombarded with new images and rampant information, then that is the state your psyche is bound to mimic.  In this case, country life truly is more simple.  In our complicated modern world we are required to steal away the time, the energy, and the will to rediscover our own inner chant.

Here’s where I’m going to admit something really eerie.  I once made it rain.  Of course, I mean that figuratively.  Three years ago when we bought this place and were still commuting from the city, I decided we needed to move here full-time.  At that point, I had no idea how it could possibly happen before retirement, and obviously I couldn’t be certain that I would like a permanent life out here anyway.  But with that vision, a lot of prayer, a little planning, hard work, and the help of two hurricanes, it actually came to pass.

And that reminds me of another cliché I love to hate:  Be careful what you wish for.