Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Rainy day dog

We make it to the end of the road before lightning flashes in a sheet, quick and blinding over the dull day. Thunder rumbles long and loud rolling over the mountains and across the sky as though it is a physical thing and I can almost see it tumbling above the trees at the trailhead in a great arc across the horizon to finally trail away into the distance.

“Okay Murds,” I call as the rain starts again, but he has already disappeared. Run off with Jack into the woods just past the creek, which has become a great surging river after a day of relentless heavy rain.

So I call again, scan the trees, turn my ear towards the woods, listening for the telltale rustle and crack of underbrush as Murdoch and Jack gallivant off on some adventure. There is nothing but the sound of water dripping from trees, running in streams over the ground, falling from the sky. The rain comes down harder, clatters on the hood of my raincoat and I call for Murdoch again.

There is another flash and more thunder, closer this time and I think the woods are not a great place to be. I wander back to the road and wait in the rain. Watch it bounce off the creek that is now a river that had become a beaver pond last fall, pointed stumps of trees emerge from deep puddles along the edge of the trail.

I am about to call again when two small shapes bound from among the trees some distance up the trail. I wave my arms over my head and call. Murdoch pounds towards me, Jack lolloping along behind, not ready to commit in case something more interesting presents itself.

I clip Murdoch’s leash to his collar, wet and cold, and try to explain about lightning. He walks home slightly behind me, subdued, soaked through. It is the shortest walk in the history of walks and he hangs his head as though he is being punished.

The rain continues. For days it falls from a solid grey sky, sometimes pounding so heavily on the roof it drowns out all other sounds and turns the forest outside our windows into a dark green blur glimpsed through a grey curtain. It falls in gentle showers and blows along the road in sheets and hangs in the air like a mist, until everything is saturated and tree branches droop, laden down with globules of glass.

Murdoch and I slosh through the woods, our well-trodden trails running like tiny rivers, bubbling over rocks and roots. We return to the meadow at the end of our road, just before the trail begins, and play frisbee over the sodden ground as the rain pours down. Murdoch splashes through the field, kicking up water, then swims in an icy puddle that has formed in the ditch and spread out in to the field.

The days are dark and dreary, and yet because of the rain they are full of energy and promise that when it eventually stops, and the sun comes out again, there will be flowers.


  1. rain here, too. we have a fire in the fireplace tonight. spring will come in july....

    1. Yes, that is when we expect it too. We could be using the woodstove most nights, but have run out of steam in the firewood department (eight to nine months of firewood seems a bit ridiculous). So, mornings are a bit chilly.