Posts Tagged With: rainy days

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like…Autumn?

Woke to the sounds of rain this morning. Second only to the hush and muffle of snowfall, rain makes me want to put on my raincoat, grab an umbrella and get outside.

Rainy skies, golden trees, no people. Perfect.

Rainy skies, golden trees, no people. Perfect.

Given than I think of this place as my Riparian Preserve, I loved that the place appeared abandoned when I arrived. I didn’t cross paths with a single person until the last five minutes. A photographer with a tripod making his way toward some wonderful scenery to shoot seemed a bit put off by seeing another human, as was I. We successfully ignored the existence of each other and went our separate routes.

How can I possibly describe the scene today? The diffused light through low clouds muted and highlighted colors. Today’s cloud filtered light particularly played up the yellows and enhanced the grayish brown of everything else. Greens, of course, seemed greener, but golds sang out in the rain-light like a soprano in a choir.

Don’t take my words for it. They’re inadequate today. Stroll along with me, imagining the sound and feel of rain on your raincoat and the not particularly cold water seeping through to your wool socks.

Today's stand-in for the sun.

Today’s stand-in for the sun.

Here in the desert autumn isn’t. We don’t really get to experience that particular season. At best we usually get a hard freeze for a night or two in late December or January which turns the deciduous leaves dark brown and drops them to the ground a day later. Nothing pretty about that. But this year serves as a delicious exception. Lows in the high thirties and low forties have kissed the leaves and made them blush red or brighten to a golden hue.

Most of the water birds stayed quieter than usual today. I’m not sure what’s up with that. Why would rain shush them? The ducks stayed tucked in, beaks nestled under a wing while they sat or floated quietly. The night herons seemed more stoic than normal not flying off when I approached. Jumpy best describes a few of the shore birds, as if they don’t know how to behave when it rains. Not a hummingbird or yellow finch in sight, snuggled up inside their tight little nests, I’m sure.

At times the trail was more puddle than path, but I managed. No speed walking or jogging going on here. Just a slow meander. Sure my toes got wet as I knew they would so I’d put on wool socks and didn’t mind the damp at all.

I’m glad I ignored the to-do list this morning, threw on a hat over my sleep scruffy hair and spent an hour under rainy skies. Such moments happen rarely here and want savoring. Desert Autumn or Winter rains, whatever name it goes by suits me just fine.

The gold up close, seems a bit worn and ready to drop.

The gold up close, seems a bit worn and ready to drop.

~~~~~

“Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet.” ~Roger Miller

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Categories: Nature, photographs | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Unmatchable Pleasure of Puddle Jumping

The rarity of rain in the desert brings out the oddness in some of us dry skinned, somewhat parched critters. Today’s downpour, complete with a bit of surprising lightning, reminds me of some delicious memories.

We don’t live in a rural area, but we have rural patches of neighborhoods in the landscape of our town that haven’t been incorporated into the city. This leaves wonderful one and two acre lots with farm animals, irrigation, bumpy roads without curbs, traditional  on post mailboxes out front of the houses, and best of all, a sense of the history of this former farming community turned big city suburb.

2000 Jeep Cherokee

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I used to drive my youngest daughter to fifth and sixth grade, usually taking a short stretch of county road. On rainy days the water would flow haphazardly on the edges of the road in huge muddy puddles. At the time we were driving a well-loved older model Jeep Cherokee with four-wheel drive.

Did you know if you’re going just the right speed and hit a puddle at a certain spot you’ll get a wide arching wall of water that can shoot out a good twenty feet? My daughter and I discovered that one drizzly morning.

Rainy school mornings took on a whole different feel for us. The anticipation of knowing we’d get to splash and spray our way to the school motivated us so we were usually ready to go earlier than usual. We called these mornings puddle jumping days.

Fortunately no one was ever walking the muddy shoulder of the road on rainy days. Approaching a glistening pool of brown water filled us with excitement. The sensation of tires hitting the edge of the puddle was answered with a marvelous shower and spray of water propelling outward and upward in an artistic chocolate sweep. Sometimes, depending on the depth of the puddle and the angle the tires hit the water, we’d end up covering the jeep in a  deluge of mucky water. Fortunately I usually had the wipers already going due to the rain pouring down.

Child enjoys a puddle in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

Does this look fun, or what? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We aimed for puddle after puddle all the way down the road. I’m sure any onlookers thought we were high school troublemakers raising havoc. The goats and sheep looked on in bemused silence. We left behind emptied puddles and chaos.

Ah, we laughed our way to school those days.

I still can’t resist a puddle on the side of the road, whether I’m walking or driving. I want to make a splash, soak everything in sight then look behind me at the mayhem.

Today is gonna be a great one!

Categories: Joy, Memory Lane, Outdoors | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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