A few days ago, the Pacific delivered a day of delights and a much needed reprieve from the rain. Mt. Rainier stood out across the Sound like a grand back-drop presiding over a lofty opera: so surreal and stunning, I half expected to see brush strokes and stage lighting. The clouds were thinly woven, easily unraveled by a winsome breeze one warp and weft thread at a time. By mid-morning the sun was well above the tree tops and reigning unchallenged. Underfoot, the crocus blossoms, scattered like confetti on the lawn, caught the light and the attention of a few brave honeybees and this backyard explorer. This was indeed a day to seize.
Hoping to refresh the stale air and woodsmoke smell of winter lockdown, I propped open all of the doors. The lungs of my old farmhouse took a deep breath and welcomed fresh air through the front door to the East, the backdoor to the West, the warped French doors on the sunny side south and weather side, and the north-facing divided-light door where Boz spends many an hour plotting the demise of indifferent deer and dancing towhees.
Boz and Gracie retreated to the front porch to nap (and snore) in the sun, awakening occasionally for a side trip to the lawn, to investigate and to christen a rogue daffodil or two. I headed down to the front field where I marveled (and lamented) over the rapid rate of weed growth on my veggie plot. The orchard looked good, rows of adolescent trees bare-branched and strong, awaiting longer days and warmer soil.
Walking back to the house, tripping over some downed branches and trying to clear my mind of the chores ahead, I took refuge on my lodgepole swing. I ignored the crackle of dried leaves on the seat as another item to be added to my to-do list, and instead closed my eyes, caught the breeze and listened to spring awakening. The robins obliged with a chorus of chirps, the crows followed with fly-by caws, and a duet of bulldogs barked to be fed. Then, the sun kissed my face like a sorely-missed friend, and I forgot all about the weeks of rain.
In that moment the day was mine, and spring had lifted her hem and showed me a little ankle, and for that I am grateful. Today the rain is back, soaking all that is rooted, legged and held down. Not a bad thing, as I love the rain and the Northwest’s moody disposition, but it is nice to see that on occasion the sun can shine, and the sky can be blue, and my memory of rainy days can escape me, even in March.
In honor of our rain, let me share with you my favorite Seattle joke.
A newcomer to Seattle arrives on a rainy day. He gets up the next day and it’s raining. It also rains the day after that, and the day after that. Standing on his porch, he sees the neighbor kid poke his head out the door and asks him out of despair, “Hey kid, does it ever stop raining around here?” The kid says, “How would I know? I’m only 6.”