Have you ever wondered how scientists accurately measure annual precipitation. Me too! It's what I think to myself on a daily basis. How do they do it?!? How do they know how much rain fell? Well, this year, I found out.....accidentally. You see, we have this possession that holds water very well. It's not exactly *supposed* to hold water. But if one accidentally forgets to, I don't know, take out the plug that normally drains the water in the winter, it becomes a perfect vessel for holding water. Yes, I'm speaking of our boat.
It was a very long, wet winter. So long, that where we normally take our first trip to the lake in May, we didn't even take the cover off the boat until last week. Mid July! A group of college kids from our church asked if we could come to an activity they were doing and take some kids on a few runs. Of course we can, we said.
So as we were getting the boat attached to the truck to service it, my husband said, "That's weird, does the truck bed look extra low to you?"
We both stared at the back of the truck which looked closer to the ground than it ever had. "Yes, that's too low," I said. "Did it break."
We got out a flashlight and looked under the truck bed.
"What's changed?" My husband asked.
That got me thinking. The only thing that could have changed is the weight of the boat. "Do you think some sort of animal crawled in our boat and died?" We do live in the country, after all, so it wouldn't have surprised me.
"That would have to be one heavy animal."
I gasped. "Water."
"No," my husband said.
"Is the plug in??"
"Yes, but it can't be water."
"Take the cover off."
And we did. And it was water. Lots and lots of water. After screaming, Whyeeeeeeeeee?!? And then crying for 24 hours, we drained the boat and then took it to the mechanic to find out it's chances of survival which we thought were little to none. (If you would've seen the muddy mess that was inside our boat, you would've agreed.) But the man I will now call the Boat Doctor from heaven, said it was fine. He just had to change the belt and the pump. It may have been inappropriate that I gave this man a big hug and a sloppy kiss, but I totally did (just kidding, I didn't, but I wanted to).
After all this though, I can tell you we got 20 inches of precipitation in our yard this winter (or one third of a boat full). I'm sure there are devices that work better for measuring rainfall, but if you don't have one of those on hand, try a boat.