small community life

The spring of the year….

In the spring morning would often greet you with he same as fall with the symphony of sound, the dripping of rain, the smells and senses of moisture. Yet it greeted with a difference the grass would green as early as late January, early February. The trees would also begin to come to life with sugars emerging in the branches with bronze and purple hues. Bark on the alders would start showing a healthy white. The emerging grass would shoot up like a rocket given a booster. The blackberry vines reaching for the light of spring as the days light increased with every minute, making the days longer in appearance. The chickens coming out of the coop with new vigor to great the bugs and worms emerging with the longer and  warmer days. The spring starting February-ish brought forth the buds of rhododendrons, the bulbs showing their greenery, with the promise of their display of color soon to be seen.

The life emerging brought forth a newness of a growing season coming on. The kids would often show a new vigor for school. The dreary fall/winter coming to an end and the heavy rain coats would be replaced with light rain coats and sweatshirt. The feeling of dampness constantly on the shoulders would end for a short while.

One spring day I decided I needed to control some soggy ground so my garden would not be sitting in saturated ground. The reason for this is an underground spring had sprung up at the corner of the garden. I had discovered a bubbling spring earlier in the year. That year had brought more concentrated rain in a few short months. We often underground water spring forth in areas around the field.  I decided that if the water wanted to come forth I would at least divert it away from the garden and let it run freely away from the garden. The study of how water will find its own path is fascinating. I dug around the bubbling spot, it immediately started to bubble stronger, pool up and then seeking a down hill path ran away from the garden down the ever so slight incline. With the grass growing, the water would spread out soaking ground down hill. A perfect study in how grass filters the water as it slowly moves through the grass. There had been a naturally trench that ran away from the garden down hill through the field. I had studied maps of the land we owned and discovered there had been a well  placed in that very field from a spring. The spring had never been used that we know of and there had been a creek close to the trench. Knowing this, I dug the sod down to dirt and watched the water seek the trench. I spent a couple of days diverting working on the grass in the trench. As I cleared the grass the water made its own creek until a new area of grass and then it would spread out amongst the grass. I eventually worked it down to a barrier of blackberries. At this point I started to dig out an area to create a pool that could be a pond. As I dug a hole opened up in the ground . Not big about 6 inches across and not very deep about 8 inches deep. The water being to suck down the hole like something was vacuuming it down the hole. The little creek was now about 8 inches wide and began to run freely down to the hole. I was like a kid playing at the edge of a creek diverting water and making little dams to watch how water runs.  By summer the water ran very little but my garden was no longer threatens with soggy ground.

As a side note if anyone in the ecology movement had known that I had done this I would have been fined for diverting water, Even tho the water was entering back into a creek it originally had run it 80 years earlier according to records we had about the property.

It took about 2 weeks  working on this project about 20 minutes every morning after putting the kids on the buss to school.  As I worked this creek the bunch of daffodils that grew 30 feet into the field greeted me with their show of color. The splendor of working on something and watching the progress of growth and natural flow of life became exciting.

small community life

The fall of the year…..

Mornings in the fall, when all was appeared to be at rest and the ground and sky were soggy with an overnight rain. Every tree appeared to be skeletons standing in wait for life. The grass brown and bent as if tramped down by something large laying on it. When only the rain is what bent and bowed the lifeless grass. The leaves littering the ground like snow, tramped down and compacted by the power of water falling from the sky.  The only thing green was the many towering evergreens  reaching for the clouds. The constant drip, drip, drip of remaining rain water making music in the morning hours as all was waking for the day. The sparkle of each and every drop of water on the trees grass, rhododendrons, and evergreens.  The bare trees came alive, showing like diamonds and jewels. This made the rainy environment a wonder to behold.

The trees with their soggy moss hanging, The smell of leaves rotting on the ground, the music of dripping water, the chirping of birds the distant calling of bald eagles swooping in for breakfast, the calling of elk and deer to their young and the chickens emerging from the coop with the clucking and crowing of the rooster for the day to begin. All these noises greeting the morning in a symphony of sound and smells.

In an area that got 12 feet of rain a year The creator making the beauty show through the dreary backdrop. The symphony of sound, the aromas of a forest at rest.the feel of moisture in the air (always), the cold that chills you to the bone because it is a wet cold not a dry cold.  around all of the time. Something to be grateful for,  even in something that looks depressing.

All these senses showing a person that life is in every surrounding you live in. The ultimate in “stop and smell the roses” is truly not a cliché.