Thursday, December 03, 2009

Rain Walk

Thursday, December 3, 2009

It's already into December but one would question that this morning. It's 52 degrees, there's a 3-5 mph variable wind, and the rain is coming down in buckets with slight interruptions that last only long enough for a short walk. Karl the Wonder Dog and I just returned due more to his insistence than my desire. Reports across the nation from garden writers indicate rain and flooding prevails most everywhere.

Karl and I cheated a bit and started the walk in the truck until we got to the end of the big field. He seemed bothered by the shortness of the trip as he is a dog that loves truck rides. For him, today's ride ended in a question mark. I coaxed him out and we headed up the back woods trail. Two more fir balsams had come down during last night's windstorm. The beeches along the field's perimeter are obvious with leaves bleached by the rain but still holding tight in places while other branches are already forming next year's buds.

We walked to the top of the first road and I stopped without choice when Karl came to an abrupt stop. Coyote, fisher or bear had obviously come by recently as there was no moving this dog, his feet implanted like big bridge abutments going nowhere. Straight ahead was the last of an old spruce that has been falling apart for years. Since we had visited last the top arms dropped to the forest floor in final rest. It used to be fun to climb and peer from but now its age has made that unsafe and just a memory.

We half trotted down the hill on the back woods road. The wind blew water drops sideways and they dripped from the visor of my cap. Karl stopped often to shake. He sneaked under the lower branches of a spruce as I stooped to pick the spent scape from a lady's tresses orchid. Karl

showed no amusement for the old orchid as I made a mental note of its location for next spring. Vermont has a number of orchids and some are growing secretively in open fields or along woods roads begging to be seen but at the same time hiding coyly from disrespectful shovels of harm.

We stopped for a moment as Karl picked up the rustling sound of birch bark catching errant breezes. He couldn't figure out where the noise came from but it was uncommon to his ears. White birch are interesting to me but Karl could care.

We returned to the truck in time for my friend to jump inside and then begin to shake water everywhere. With all the outdoors I don't know why dogs do this but one is no different than the next. Karl couldn't wait to get home to the warm fire. Lunch and a hot coffee sounded good to me.

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where a second flock of snow geese has passed overhead this morning.

George Africa
Vermont Flower Farm

1 comment:

Erica Houskeeper said...

Hi George,

Isn't this warm weather unbelievable? It's hard to believe it's December. Enjoyed your post today and the photos. The top photo is really interesting and beautiful.

Enjoy the weekend.