Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Rain and Solitude
I'm driving home, alone, late, having worked a long day. It is very dark and all is wet- wet fields, wet roads, wet grass. I'm wet, the dampness seeming to seep inside of me after days of rain. I'm in a funk- steelhead funk, as the weather has been uncooperative, with cold wintry weather stretching far into April, and now flooding rains, this the fourth blowout rain in ten days. In protest I've taken on yet another job, a small one, something to fill my time until the rivers drop. My friend Luke has sent me a picture from his phone, of flooded fields with a trout stream somewhere in the middle- it won't be fishable for a week. As I drive home alone in the dark, the fog lifting off the road surface, obscuring it, giving the illusion of flight, and I constantly check that I'm not veering off the road. As I pull through town, I see that the golf course is flooded- no grass to be seen under the sulferous lights, water standing in the right lane, now running in a torrent I dare not enter down the street. I stay left and go around it, eventually making my way home. It's late, but I stop and check on the chicks I bought today. Part of me wishes they were hackle birds, as Kirk Werner's Weekly Drivel post reminded me to check the price of hackle on Ebay, and I see that some grizzly saddles have topped out at over $400 in the bidding- ridiculous, but I hope that Keough, Metz and Whiting (and whoever else sells hackle) are making money. Someone has to. Maybe I should order some eggs from Alvin Theriault. My chicks are fine- they seem quite happy actually, their little home perhaps a bit more cozy than mine right now. Our relationship will be brief, these are meat birds. They're only cute for a day, by the way, and in 6 weeks or so they'll be 4-6 pounds and ready to eat, and extremely ugly- I don't get attached, I never do. Something about mucking out the chicken house a few times that tends to put a damper on my affections. That and the feed bill.
I don't always mind the rain. I often bow hunt in the rain, and I fish in the rain every chance I get- it usually gets me some solitude, if not fish (and deer). This weeks rain, while slightly ridiculous, is a good thing. The rivers need it. The fish need it. It's good for the mushrooms. We didn't get enough snow this winter. I pull down my long driveway, shut the truck off and step out. I can smell the water- it smells like spring now, damp, earthy, and slightly green. The frogs are out in force finally, trilling so loudly that's it's a relief to go inside. I want to watch something on TV, but I have flies to tie, so I wander upstairs, sit down at my bench, and get started.