Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Long Rainy Day

Note the smoke of autumn's first fire!
Rain began on Sunday afternoon.
Heat and drought have continued for so many weeks that when the first cooling drops spattered down I felt I should pretend I didn't notice--brace myself for disappointment if once more the hoped for
 moisture passed us by.
It was quickly clear it had really set in to rain.
There was the odor of tired, dry earth and dusty foliage which always accompanies the first moments of  rain after long drought; then as the rain steadied and continued the scent of freshening leaves and reviving plants filled the air.
The temperature plummeted about 20 degrees by nightfall.

Thankfully we have not had the devastating deluge that so damaged my home state of Vermont over the previous weekend.
The rain comes down with a steady, moderate drumming, slacks off to a mizzle-drizzle, intensifies again and one can truly see the browned grass perking up, the green color restored literally overnight.
I woke early this morning, surrounded by snuggling cats.
I was up before six, bundled into warm clothes and my wellies, out to feed Pebbles and the barn kittens, clean the litter boxes.
These chores done, I walked down the road to check on the level of water in Big Creek.
The water was very low on Friday when Devin rode the 4-wheeler down for a look.
This morning it looked like a creek again rather than a dry expanse of shale, but certainly not in spate.
I trudged up the driveway, rain drizzling down my neck, sniffing the scents of rained-pummeled mint and southernwood as I neared the garden.

We've been piling scrap paper in the fireplace all summer.
There were  dry twigs still in the kindling basket which I arranged on the paper, went out to the woodshed for an armfull of slabs and a few small chunks of dry wood.
With the fire off to a good crackle, I hurried through a hot shower, and took my coffee in to my rocking chair, shaking my wet hair out to dry in the delightful warmth.

Matt and Gina's plot in our lower garden.  I think the turnip tops grew several inches in 24 hours!

I wrote several long overdue letters--wrote them by hand on pretty paper--dropped them at the Post Office,
drove into town to the bank, and then a stop at Goodwill.
The find of the day was a pair of pretty appliqued and quilted pillow shams for Gina.
G. being bored, is working at ORGANIZING my kitchen!
We are still sorting, culling, rearranging. There is no point in hanging on to all the items I had accumulated during the years of larger houses.
Many of my collectables have come from charity shops and such, so not a big investment, but still too much for what I need now.
Willis has exercised his house privileges today while the tortie girls, Sadie and Sally are, as usual ,content to prowl about the barns.
G. removed the antique wooden dough bowl which has rested on top of a run of kitchen cupboards.
Willis, who had recently appropriated it as a resting place, was obviously annoyed with G. for moving things.
He proceded to make a pest of himself, pacing along the top of the cupboards, plopping down to stroll the counters, and finally inserting himself onto a high shelf where he could oversee the work.

I have been renovating my clothes closet while G and Willis tended the kitchen.
Warm weather clothes sorted to the far end of the rack, jeans and cozy long sleeved tops refolded and  ready for cooler days.
All very domestic.
And suddenly I am more than ready to call it a day--almost 11 PM.
It is a night when a quilt is welcome on the bed; a night when I expect my tribe of cats will be cuddled close.


  1. Beautifully descriptive of the return of long awaited moisture - not something we ever experience here that's for sure - and it's effect on the senses and vegetation.

    Love the photo of Willis on the shelf. What a character!

    Hope you and the tribe slept well.

  2. Ah, I see you had some rain too. Yours was more needed than ours, which has been putting in an appearance ever since St Swithun's Day back in July!!! Latest downpour was v. heavy though, and accompanied by gales which removed the plastic outer of my greenhouse : (

    I could do with one of my daughters here to help me get things sorted out . . . Plenty of cats to lend a paw though!

  3. Aaaahhhh, that first scent of an autumn fire. Nice! We don't smell that very often down here, but when we do it is such a joy.

    Glad you got some much needed rain and were able to work on some indoor projects.

    It is always amazing how quickly things green up and perk up with some rain.

    Have a great day ~ FlowerLady

  4. Lucky you, we got very little rain from Lee and are still bone dry down here. I wish someone would organize my cupboards!

  5. So glad you got some rain ...it is amazing how the greenery suddenly looks perky.I cant believe its A..... I cant say the word because I really believe its still Summer until October.lol Great descriptive post. xx

  6. Hi,love a nice cosy fire to sit in front of.Bet the air smelt lovely after a good rain fall when you havent had any for so long.Love Jill xx

  7. Al; Willis is indeed a cat with stellar personality! During these weeks on my own, I can wait for bedtime until I'm ready to fall asleep quickly--usually after midnight, then be up and about after my precious 5 hours or so of slumber. No danger of over-sleeping with a house full of cats!

    BB; I remember that greenhouse plastic is fragile at best. One of J.'s fall projects was to assemble the greenhouse kit he bought second hand, a project that is now on hold. I'm watching to see if the lettuce and beet seed put in the ground weeks ago will now sprout with the encouragement of several days of rain.

    FL; In the past we have spent time in Florida during different seasons as J.'s parent spent some years of retirement there. I've a cousin in Tampa whose former house had a fireplace, but never heard whether it got much use.

    Janet; There's surely no 'fair' dishing out of weather. We feel blessed to have rain without the side effects of wind or flood. [The chief organizer is still at work on cupboards and closets!]

    Angie; I expect we will have many more warm days when this spell of rain is done. I love autumn even as I brace for winter.

    Jill; The fire was indeed cozy and it was so tempting to linger there. I knew if I reached for a book I'd be gone--and there are some tasks here I've simply got to wade through. The cats took advantage of the rainy day and found snug places to nap.