In the stillness that fell after sunset, clouds obscured the stars, but the lights of houses spilled into the night, faintly illuminating the leaves of bushes which began to shine as they were dampened by the first raindrops. Reflections gradually emerged from the dark pavement as the water sheeted across it. Wind stirred, and leaves not yet soaked went whirling from the trees and clattered up the street like swarms of scuttling crabs. The sprinkling of rain turned to a rapid drumming of drops beating against grey tree trunks, turning them black and shiny, soaking the lawns and flower beds, flattening the softer plants. Thirsty soil soaked up what it could, and the rest spilled into the rill that forms between the pavement and the front yards along the street. Since then, it has rushed steadily down toward the gullies that gather into streams which eventually plunge down the canyons into the Feather River. Now, I am sitting in my warm room, listening to the gusts of wind blow tattoos of rain against my windows, and the drips that fall from the eaves, and the singing rush from the downspout. What a symphony of rain!