Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Comfort of a Rainy Day

Today it has been a very rainy day. The pups and I went to bed last night to the sound of pouring rain and…woke up to the sound of pouring rain. Somewhere in between there, I dreamed again about zombies- (note to self: STOP watching “The Walking Dead” before bed!) and got up to let the dogs out in the night.

The problem with it being rainy is that it’s also muddy. This means that when the dogs come in from outside, they’re wet and either must be dried with a towel or go back to bed muddy.

We’re having a lot of rain in these parts lately. All of the rivers are swollen and nearing flood stage. My garden is a bit of a bog. There’s usually one area that floods when it rains but the ground is so saturated, it’s looking rather like wetlands out there.

I actually don’t mind the rain though. I find it soothing, particularly when it comes down heavily. It’s just that it seems a little unbalanced that we have so much rain at this time of year but, come August, we’re having a drought and praying for rain to satiate the parched garden.

Yet for now, the rain is nice. I like to see it splashing down outside. Perhaps it’s growing up on the rainy isle of Britain but whenever it’s murky outside and the windows are covered with raindrops, part of me just sighs with contentment that this is the way it should be at times. I like being driven inside by the wetness and I really like it at night when you can see the rain in the headlights of cars as they sloshily drive along the streets .

The rain appeals to my ‘inside girl’ nature. While working outside in the garden is lovely as is taking a long walk outside on a nice day, as I’ve said many a time, I am not an outdoorsy sort. My favourite activities have always been quiet, indoor activities. Even when the weather is nice, I find that I simply go outside to do the indoor activities such as reading and writing.

I’m actually looking forward to the weather being nice enough to sit outside and read. Last year, I found one of my very favourite things to do was sit outside after I’d mown the lawn in the evening with a cool glass of wine, a good book and the puppies chasing each other nearby.

Still, I’m not looking to the future because I’m not happy with the present. The rainy night means I can hibernate inside, pull the curtains early and spend the evening curled up with the pups even though it means we won’t get to take our evening walk. I’m finding that not only is the walking good to exercise Sookie and Rory but it’s also a good way for me to get exercise. I finally mapped out our normal route and discovered we walk over a mile each night. This is not bad going for a stroll around the neighbourhoods.

On these strolls, I’ve become a very nosy neighbour. I love to look at people’s gardens and houses and to get ideas for how I can landscape my own garden or add some detail to my house. We’ve walked so much that certain houses become landmarks- there’s the one that belongs to someone who is clearly a hippie or identifies with them as the house not only always has a VW bug parked outside but also a sign on the door that says “Hippies go around back.” There’s the house with the cute little statue of puppies underneath a garden bench. There’s the house with the good landscaping, tidy mulch and painstakingly-cared for garden.

Then there are the squirrel houses. These are the places where we almost inevitably find squirrels on our walk. The girls and I have decided that squirrels are dirty rotten cheaters. They come down from their trees, sit on the street as if daring my twin dachshunds to ‘come and get them’ and then they run. We chase them and the girls get excited. Then the squirrel goes up a tree and…game over because my dogs can’t climb the trees. We are of the firm belief that if a squirrel wants to taunt, it shouldn’t be allowed an easy out. However, squirrels appear to have their own rules including not being eaten.

Our evening walks are a great way to relax. This time of year, we don’t see too many neighbours. It’s usually just me, the girls and whatever dog barks at us from behind their fences.
It’s nice to live in a neighbourhood where it’s not only safe to walk but we have a nice route as well. Even though it’s not nice enough to walk every night- particularly nights like tonight when it’s rainy- it’s a lovely feeling to know that as the days get longer and the nights shorter, there will be more and more chances to get out, discover new things about the area and meet new neighbours.

For now, however, I’m just going to enjoy the rain.

Happy Thursday!

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