Surprise Ending to 2010

December 31, 2010

Who could have imagined THIS?

In the early hours of dawn, warm gusts of wind, a thunderstorm, crashes of lightening, showers of rain – on New Year’s Eve! I look out from our second story bathroom window and saw that every flake of snow on the side of the house was gone. Not one speck of white.

I let the dogs out of the back door and realize Dominic will not have to do any snow shoveling on the patio. Then I recoil in disgust. Oh. ick. Every bit of dog waste and Damn Rabbit droppings is exposed. Oh. Gross. I hook up the hose and put on the power nozzle which promptly shoots out of the hose and across the patio. I put it in again, holding it between my fingers, and then turn on the hose. I spray everything towards the flower beds, walking back and forth. I rid myself of the water-wasting guilt by telling myself that existing conditions were not sanitary and could even be considered a health issue. Finally, it is washed clean.

Tony peeks outside to ask me for the camera. “You’re quite the picture,” he says. As I am dressed in lime green pajama pants (with fluffy white sheep), a purple windbreaker and pink and brown snow boots, I think he is being facetious. I give him a duck face and he goes back inside.

The ground is sodden and soaked all over the yard. The firepit is full of water, a little brick lined lake. There is no sign of it being absorbed. We are expecting a deep freeze to begin as we ring in the new  year, so that lake will become a block of ice within 24 hours. Isn’t that amazing?

Also amazing are the colors in the garden (my outfit not considered). The greens that have been exposed are rich and saturated, as are the shades of browns and reds and ambers. Everything seems to be in Technicolor, deep and true. The catmint looks untouched by any snow or frost; that is a hardy perennial. I would not be surprised to see it burst into bloom. The foxglove is the same, undamaged, unslimed, happy and crisp. The chives are bright green and while they are not perky – they lay flat against the ground, exhausted from the weight of the snow – they too seem ready to burst into purple bloom. At the bottom of the sedum, I see green rosettes, already preparing themselves for next year’s season.

A hunk of ice floats in the pond. Below is water and above is water, the ice hovers in the middle. I see no goldfish although I look carefully. It begin to sprinkle again, rippling circles forming in the pond and in the firepit lake.

The peanut butter on the bird seed ornaments is bleached from all the rain. It looks lardy and pasty, but is still covered in seed.

In the front of the house is the only place with snow. There are two melting lines along the driveway, where it was mounded each time it was shoveled.

There are brussel sprouts and spinach exposed in the veggie garden. The spinach looks perfect in every way. The brussel sprouts do too. I wonder if I could harvest them and have them with our New Year’s Eve dinner. I think I probably could. But I don’t.

It begins to rain a little faster, a little more and my hair is becoming truly wet. It is time to go in.

As I write this, the sky is clearing, the blue is breaking through. It is crisp and clear and colorful. What a beautiful way to end 2010!

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