“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.
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.
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.