Friday, March 28, 2014
Spring in the Northwest
"I hate the rain," Bubba grumbled as he pulled on his sneakers this morning and grabbed the umbrella on his way out the door for his morning walk.
"I know." There was nothing else to say. He knows the rain doesn't bother me, even when I have to walk in it. Especially on a day like today, when yesterday afternoon brought brilliant sunshine and I was lucky to walk under a canopy of cherry blossoms with the dog, a pink carpet of tissue-thin petals lining the sidewalk. Everywhere I went, I could smell the sweet perfume of daphne and I watched with a keen eye for the season's first tulips in someone's yard.
To wake up this morning to the sound of the water gurgling in the gutters conjured images of fat, shiny worms making their way across the pavement. I could hear the birds in the magnolia tree right outside my bedroom window and I always imagine they are celebrating the rain, anticipating puddles to splash in and the droves of worms coming out for an easy breakfast.
I sit at the kitchen table, the house silent except for the gentle swoosh of the dishwasher and there is something about hearing the movement of water as I watch the rain fall outside that feels cozy and comforting. The dog, still damp from our morning walk, lies breathing heavily at my feet and out of the corner of my eye I catch sight of a huge crow descending into the yard. My first instinct is revulsion.
Ugh, crow. I think. Why couldn't it be a robin or that sapsucker I see every once in a while? But I catch myself. Why not a crow? Because they eat garbage instead of worms and bugs or seed? Because they are big? Because their cries do not sound like songs to me? In that instant, I feel a softening and turn to watch the crow more closely. A smile spreads across my face as I watch it hop with a little jaunt across the stones toward the planter. He has every right to be here, too.
My pants are speckled with raindrops, the bottom cuffs soaked from puddles we walked through this morning. The cherry blossoms were raining down on us and are stuck to the sleeves of my jacket like translucent pink polka dots. The flagstones are shiny wet and I can't resist stepping hard into the puddle that forms right inside the gate, although I do look around to make sure none of the neighbors was watching.
When Bubba comes back from his walk and leans in for a kiss, I love the way his cheeks feel cold and damp against mine. He smells fresh from the outdoors and I close my eyes and inhale deeply. This is the scent of Spring.