Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Rain, Thunder and Lightning, Mud, More Rain

One can do nothing about the weather; it must be endured.  We grumble, complain, fret about drowning gardens, crops unplanted, the dreariness of seemingly endless storms.
As I write, at 10:45 PM on Wednesday evening, rain pounds on the metal roof of the house, streams down darkened windows. Thunder has boomed, subsided, rumbled around again.

I pulled on my boots this morning and went out to take stock of the damage of Tuesday evening's torrential storm. We didn't have the hail which clattered down in other parts of the county.  We simply had too much water pelting on us in too short a space of time.
Half open peonies sprawled, heads down; late-blooming iris lay horizontally over the edge of the raised bed which is partially sheltered by the over-hanging roof of the shop.

I had been weeding Tuesday when it began to rain just before dark.
Two weeks ago the ground was too dry for weeds to be neatly extracted. Stalks snapped, roots had to be pried loose.
Once it began to rain [was it 10 days ago?] intermittent hours of sunlight haven't been enough to wick away moisture before more fell.

Ridges rise steeply on either side of our house. When there is hard rain, freshets form and course down the hillsides, converging to swell the brook that normally putters along in its gravel bed, emptying into a culvert at the foot of the lane, gurgling out on the far side of the road.

Another lesser brook trickles along the pasture hedgerow, gushes under the lane and angles along the stand of willows that border the lane.

Nellie, who enjoys water, has discovered an opening in the ground--a burrow or tunnel made by some small creature. He prods at the hole, stops to listen, swirls a paw through the muddy water.

Nellie doesn't mind wet feet. He splashes and stirs until his white stockings are a mess.

The goats don't like the wet in their pasture.
There are shelters for them, but they plod about disconsolately.
I watched this brown 'girl'--a favorite of the current crop of kids--as she maneuvered until all four feet were on the cement block.

She was still on her perch when I crossed the drive to visit the 'babies.'

The three goatlets in the foreground are sisters--triplets.

At least we can keep our front feet dry!

Willis and Charlie are high and dry on the lumber stacked on the shop porch.

I slogged along the road to our fields which lie along the creek.
The long grass was nearly waist high, the ground soggy.
I felt restless, dis-inclined to be inside, yet unwilling to wallow my way to the creek which runs below the far edge of the field.

I zig-zagged slowly up the lane, pausing to record my green and dripping world.
The hedge/fence, over-grown again with a welter of wild rose, blackberry bramble, honeysuckle.

I clambered about on the side hill above the drive, admiring the pale flowers of lyre-leaved sage.

Spider wort [perhaps] near the little brook

I haven't seen this tiny plant before, growing in the shade where scrubby trees fringe the edge of the woods.
I slithered down the wet grass of the bank, trudged past the nearly flattened clove pinks at the edge of the side porch.
Indoors, to finish the laundry, bake a pound cake, hull the strawberries purchased from the Beachy Amish produce farm farther up the ridge road.
A day of small accomplishments and now an evening of fretting over the weather!
The rain has quit for the moment, thunder is a sullen mutter, although storm warnings continue for another hour or two, and lightning still zips across the dark sky.
The morning will dawn to reveal more mud--dripping trees, bedraggled flowers.
Que sera, sera.


  1. I loved seeing your wild flowers (and those goatlings), and of course, your cats. It's good to have a round-up of your day. I need to do similar but am going flat out preparing vintage linen for the next Fleamarket and about to embark on another 3 day working weekend. I hope you get some sunshine (we have today).

    1. Jennie; Sometimes I think I 'round-up' my days so I can recall next week what was going on!
      I should think the packing, setting up and taking down for flea markets would take quite a bit of time and energy, but it means your wares go to the people instead of waiting patiently for 'lookers' in a shop setting. I'm not sure when 'flat out' can safely ebb into 'retirement!'

  2. We've had a week of 'the dink and the dank' , all good for transplanting and weeding. Yesterday the sun came out and shone all the live long day. I so appreciate your dismay at the flattened peonies and iris. It seems inevitable and reliable that it will gutter down rain when the peonies, poppies & iris are at their most beautiful.

    1. Mundi; I wish I had come up with a descriptive phrase such as 'guttering down rain'---I'm running out of ways to portray the on-going storms!
      We were out on errands today and saw so many beaten down flowers. [Sigh]

  3. We're having the opposite problem, no rain. This is the driest spring we've had since we moved here 13 years ago. Mac has to water everything every day. We've had to water the lawn and that's unusual. Doesn't slow the weeds though.

    1. Janet; Weather is SO changeable from one season to another. I'm afraid we may be headed for another sodden and moldy summer such as last year. Disheartening!

  4. What a thoughtful,beautifully written post. I enjoyed it very much. Thank you.

    1. Jocelyn; I'm glad you enjoyed the post. I feared I was nearing 'rant mode' in my distress over difficult gardening. I'm imaging your weather patterns as similar to our native Vermont [?]

  5. Your lovely photo of the wet meadow could be one of the River Frome`s water meadows in Dorset, where Thomas Hardy set 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles' .

    The goatlings are delightful,especially the two little grey ones who are keeping their feet dry!

  6. Ann; I have often run across the term 'water meadow' in books by English authors--was never quite sure if the wet meadow occurred naturally or through controlled flooding.
    Our meadows are creek 'bottom land' dry in the planted area but with a wide rim of damp shady ground along one edge and around the pond.
    'Hardy Country' is a place I would have liked to visit.

  7. I can always count on rain in May right at the time the Oriental Poppies bloom. It puts their faces in the mud like mops until the sun comes out a day or two later. Then just as the sun has finally drawn them back upright - there comes the rain again and the cycle repeats itself!