AUSTRALIA— just a prayer away

IT'S DECEMBER —summer in Australia—and the temperature keeps climbing. It's really hot. I have a lovely garden and green lawn around my home. And, of course, keeping it this way means giving it water. But there's a problem. I can't bear to turn on the tap. I feel guilty. How can I pour this precious commodity onto my patch of ground when so much of my country is suffering from a severe drought?

When I called my friends Helen and Dudley Cronin, who grow wheat, barley, and sorghum on their 1,400 acre farm 300 kilometers [186 miles] west of Brisbane in Queensland, Helen reported: "We've been suffering drought here for three years. This drought is horrific, following as it has on the one in the '90s. We're not getting consistent crops. We can't make an income. We have to borrow more and more money from the bank for planting.

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