Yesterday was a dark, chilly, drizzly, holed up in the house by the fire day.
The dogs and I were moping while looking out at the garden with our noses pressed up against the glass.
To take my mind off the rain messing with my climbing roses, I spent the better part of the day reading Tout Sweet, a recommended read from the cheerful blog, Paris Breakfasts.
It is a very funny memoir by a fashion editor who ditches her chic life in London, for a remote village in the French countryside, to heal her wounded heart while restoring a petite maison.
It got me thinking – I went looking for Jimmy…. “Honey!!!! Let’s rent our house for a year and move to France and live off the land and drink wine with homemade bagette and cheese from our little farm and and …..”
Ok, back to the sofa, like a forlorn wet pup and my fantasy read….
Here’s something apropos that I wrote last May pre- blog:
The rain gauge hanging from a post in the garden has maxed out its capacity, again.
I emptied it five days ago to start the week off at zero, and one grim, foggy, boot-burdened day has followed another. Walking through the garden stirs up clouds of mosquitoes competing for my flesh, driving me back to the kitchen flailing my arms and shaking out my clothing.
Frequent drenching is punctuated by emphatic pauses muffled in fog. Everything in the house feels heavy with moisture; the doors too fat to slide gently closed, and the towels are like soggy rags between showering, as if we lived in a beach house.
The dogs lay curled up in their beds knowing best how to wait for better days. If we accompany them into the yard, they go eagerly, but forced out alone, they return to their beds with their tails tucked in tight between their legs.
The grass is a carpet of green; the lettuces are unfurling from their beds in picture perfect bouquets of edible goodness; the evergreens are heavy with fresh emerald green coats.
Future scientists will note in tree rings that 2011 was a year of plentiful rainfall. There is much to celebrate, and I will when the sun finally returns to this part of the planet. In the mean time, I’m stalking around bumping up against the windows of the house, frustrated and blue.
With the drone of a plane overhead, skimming above the clouds, I imagine cheering passengers relieved to find our planet still does revolve around the sun, just not down here right this minute, but I’m reassured that someday the clouds will part and the sun will shine again upon our little speck in the universe.
The garden is about the only place I care to be right now. With our little puppy Lily shadowing my every move, she is a natural digger and like a cat brings me her latest catch from the yard. Moles, chipmunks and squirrels just might pick up and move next door because she has taken it upon herself to route out any varmint trespassing into my precious flowerbeds. If she has to dig to China to route them out, she will without me having to ask. Within a week of adopting this delicate, sweet, shy Texas belle, she had dug up a major rhododendron, swallowed a whole sock and then gave it back the next day, convinced Poppy that they could share her bed, decided my pale blue upholstered chair suited her as well, and won her way into each one of our hearts hook line and sinker.
Lily’s Mom was abandoned when she became pregnant. Fortunately some kind soul gave her a place to have her pups and some time to recover. They became available for adoption at 10 weeks on a Rescue website. Lily came up from Texas in a dog crate that was tossed about like a piece of luggage by the airline, but all that is behind her now and she is growing and thriving. From day one I worried that our property wasn’t big enough to contain her, and now she has tested every portion of the fence and found many escape hatches. Our vet thinks she has some hound mixed into her primarily Lab genetic pool and apparently a garnishing of wanderlust.
At first, I had the thrill of a new mother and felt the extreme tenderness of coddling her young perfect body that smelled so sweet and letting her nap upon my tummy. Seemingly overnight we’ve moved into toddler hood and the frequent reprimand. I wrack my brain for ways to burn off her bountiful energy in a non death-defying manner. She seems exhilarated by flight and propels herself with the grace of an Olympic athlete off our high stonewalls, paws perfectly extended front and rear in a long pure line, ears swept back. She runs with the grace and speed of a sleek greyhound and could be in the next county before we noticed her missing.
My greatest feat is upon me – to raise her up into adulthood unscathed while teaching her to harness her exuberance and become a semi-civilized member of the household.