Monday, June 11, 2012

rain in the UK

 You wake up to a cold room to the sound of hissing rain. The bed is warm; there is a promise of bacon and eggs in the air. You switch the light on. Then switch the light in the bathroom, the kitchen, living room. Wherever you commute in the house you need the light of the bulb, it is 7.30. You have breakfast listening to the music from 1970s and 80s on local radio smiling to very safe, politically incredibly correct jokes. Carefully arrange the bacon in strips, eggs here, mushrooms there, the plate looks like a PhD project of a Logistics student. The Grand Finale of it is marked with knife and fork resting together side by side on a dirty plate covered in egg yolk.  Read the papers and time to get out to rain. Shoulders up, neck in, you walk out. It is wet. The rain droplets reach you a million a square inch. They are so small they rest on your coat, you can see the cloth resisting to the soak. You see other people walking the same way. Hands in the pockets, necks in shoulders up a slight hunchback. You squint to see where you go and toddle of the street.

 All day the water comes on from the sky. It has one shade of grey. Light, bluish dirty white, rainy sky grey. It stays like that all day. Finally towards the evening the streets and bricks of the houses are covered with rain and the wetness makes the colours darker, one shade deeper.

 Days like these are made to go to the woods. Put a nice scarf on your head, a waterproof coat, wellies and take your dog with you. You find yourself in the narrow country lane between the kissing gate by the hedge and the fields. You call the dog to follow you, he runs behind and in front of you listening to your monologue of instructions. He stops to sniff a bush, goes into some brambles, and startles a pheasant that startles him.  A wood pigeon coos for his mate and flies out. There is a shimmer in the air on intense shades of green. There are dark bay leaf green, fresh grass green, tiny forget me not green, ivy green,  baby maze green, itching nettle green and other colours scattered around.  Spiders have been busy with their webs, hundreds of gleaming droplets swing delicately on one line. Far away the mustard yellow of rape seed fields shine on you.  The sheep in the fields nearby are wet clumps of whiteness waiting for the rain to stop patiently. A horse on the hillside yields his neck to the soggy grass wondering why he is left out here day in day out. Cantering in a knee high wheat field is a long lost memory now.  The darkness of the oak trees, the spiky promise of conker trees, shrivelled  black berries wait for you and the dog to come closer. You stop and for a glorious moment, hear the rain falling steadily and eternally on you, on trees, on plants, on wood pigeons and on the dog. You hear the hiss of water. There is nothing else, only you the dog and the rain. You look around, the whole wet countryside is so tranquil, so serene and it tastes fresh.  The dog looks up to you you, and keeps closer to keep you company in this vast greenness of the   universe

 When you come home you take your wellies off and walk around with soggy left sock toe. Snuffle your nose and sit at the kitchen table with a mug of hot tea, Garibaldi biscuits and a tired happy dog. Life is good.