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Monday, May 08, 2006


A rainy day in an English Spring

This morning I have taken time out to simply do what my dog was doing – watch the rain on my garden from our back window. Chilling, I think is the most suitable term. He with his nose and ears, me with my eyes.

Watching speckle breasted Thrushes beat the hell out of the snail population; the grey and brown flickers of Sparrows playing an avian version of ‘grab-ass’ in the shrubs and bushes; the grey clumsy shape of a pigeon trying to use next doors bird feeder and almost falling off.

It makes me glad to see Spring. Winter has gone on too long and the yearly systolic pulse of sap propelling long awaited leaves from their buds was well overdue. Now it is here. Outbursts of blossom have turned bare funereal branches into bridal garments. Colour has returned to the world. Sing me life; this is true joy. How I do miss the vibrant green of life during the years moribund dark grey months. You can’t duplicate the effect with paint and fancy lights, no matter how you might try. All this and the pleasing smell of rain dampened earth.

A house over the back has a couple of dislodged slates on its roof. I’ll tell my neighbour next time I see him to talk to. The garden shed is due a coat of preservative and my home made garden swing seat could do with a couple of coats too. Must replace that bloody awful blue rope with something a bit more natural looking. The garden centres are beckoning. The lawn was mown yesterday, so it isn’t quite such a chewed up disaster area at present. Most of the shrubs have been cut back to manageable proportions and compromises made with next door neighbours over tree heights etc. The garden is looking good; get the gazebo up on Wednesday.

2006 will be a good summer when it arrives; clear, bright mornings and intensely blue skies whose siren call lures you out of doors; long, salubrious sunny afternoons and warm humid nights when the darkness of a curtained room is the only bedding required.

Excuse me waxing lyrical. I know that the reality of summer will be too much heat, fumes and throat clogging dust during the working day. The unskilled smoke and paraffin stench of home cremation kits (Barbeques) at the weekend. The high pitched whining of bloody mosquitoes in darkened bedrooms at night and everyone short tempered and irritable due to the humidity, heat and lack of sleep. Not to mention thunderstorms every three or four days which always seem to coincide with your days off. Enough; for the moment it is an English spring with all its new life and promise.

An odd thought just struck me; wouldn’t it be funny if Paradise and Hell were just a thoughts breadth away from each other? Perhaps they are.

It is raining, and I do not care to do anything but relax and write. The rest of the world can look after itself.


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Location: British Columbia, Canada

Exasperated expatriate expostulations all the way from British Columbia, Canada. As if anyone really cared. Oh, I also watch Icelandic Volcanoes and seismic activity. Don't ask me why.

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