On vacation. At least that is what I am pretending. And, on a cloudy, blustery day if I were on "vacation" what might I be doing?
For starters, I'd be doing my happy dance because I've been desperately waiting for rain. For two months now I've been doing my rain dance (you see the trend here, right?). I'm tired of California heat waves. I've grown tired of forest fires burning my favorite places almost to the ground. I'm tired of summer. Today, I'm tired of sunshine, and I feel betrayed when, for a short while, the sun makes an appearance. I want gold and orange leaves, wind and rain. Last night at 9:56 pm the rain began to fall, and I was very grateful that nature decided to wait until I had come home from work when I could enjoy my log-awaited gift.
I decide to nuture each and every one of my senses. Here's a recap of my day:
Went outside when the rain let up. Took pictures. Breathed in the wonderful, fresh earthy scent of redwoods and leaves. Listened to the rustle of the tree tops in the wind and the stereo surround sound of Chestnut-backed Chickadees in my woods. They are either flying to, or flying from the bird feeder, stashing seeds for when the rain returns. I count a dozen on the deck and there are more dangling from the tips of tree branches. Their buddies, the juncos, towhees, Stellar's Jays and another favorite of mine, the Pygmy Nuthatch (we finally have a small flock sticking around after summer breeding) are all out and about in a feeding frenzy. Had I been able to find the battery of my video camera you would have seen a video clip of all this activity. Instead, I hope you will enjoy the still photos.
The sky grows dark.
My husband lights a fire in the fireplace and I begin to feel myself slip into a trance, brought on by the sounds of the crackling fire, the soft, gentle rain and the chorus of chickadees.
I drag out the aromatherapy candles and sensuous scents begin to faintly fill the room.
As there is much warmth from the fire, I open the sliding glass doors that lead out to the deck so that I can better hear the rain and nature soundtracks.
A very late lunch, early dinner, consists of an open faced chicken sandwich smothered with garlic jack and pepper jack cheeses -- and a glass of wine. Yep. Lunch or not, if I were on vacation I"d be sipping on a glass of wine right about now.
There are the soft pillows and a comforter that I have dragged out from the bedroom, and I settle and snuggle into them as I close my eyes, smelling the faint combination of rose and lavender, intermixed with crisp rain dampened air, madrone and oak leaves and the sweet, smoky scent that they call Fall. Each time the wind blows through the room the scent combinations change and evolve into something different, something new. The wind chime that hangs under the eaves catches the wind's current and its hollow metal tubes come together to combine a symphony that could only be delivered by nature. Webster, as always, is close at hand, curled up, warm and content. I reach out to the coffee table and grasp by book, Escape to the Mountain, by Marcia Bonta. My pages are saved by a beautiful wooden, scented bookmark given to me by Doña. The book gracefully opens to page 26 where I return to learn about the Bonta family's struggle to embrace their first harsh winter in the mountains in Pennsylvania.
The rain, which had stopped, now begins, once again, to gently fall.
Life feels good.