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Archive for August 3rd, 2009

What weird weather we’ve had around these parts. 

Traditionally, July in this neck of the woods is a wickedly humid and seriously hot time period, scorching and dry.  This year, for whatever reason, it’s been just the opposite.  Global warming?  El Nino?  Magic fairy sparkledust? 

At any rate, July was decidely cooler than we’re used to around here, and a lot wetter, too.  That’s been good for the farm crops — corn’s as high as an elephant’s eye here — and not so good for the tomatoes, which have been slow to make.  Tomatoes, as you know, rely on hot days to really come on. 

Last year I bought a rain barrel to get us through the dry season.  Unfortunately for me, the barrel arrived after the rains came and went, and then my husband never got around to rerouting one of the downspouts into it, so it went unused.  This year, my dad rerouted the downspout for me (the advantage of having a handy dad who’s retired and needing projects) and the barrel got filled early on in the season.  Except I haven’t really needed to use the collected rainwater because it’s rained and rained and rained. 

Last week we had rain.  Which, as I mentioned, is unusual for us.  But every now and again we get a good rain in July, a monsoon of sorts, that makes the streets run like rivers.  We were out on Thursday night when one such rain came, and that made for an interesting drive home.  When I turned into our street, it was flooded.  Turned around, went down a block and came in the back way.  Got drenched from the car to the house, and immediately opened the basement door to see what I suspected I would see. 

Our three cats, who are ordinarily confined to the basement when we’re not home, were standing confusedly at the edge of a rapidly expanding puddle in the basement floor, compliments of the failed backflow preventer in our ancient floor drain.  My husband cussed his way down the basement steps, rescued all three panicked and damp kitties, and we sat down on the steps to watch the flood.  It took an hour and a half for the sump pump to catch up. 

I wanted to remind him that we probably could have spent the money he chose to spend on his airplane to prevent this sort of thing from ever happening again, but at the time elected to keep my mouth shut.  There are times to pick a fight and there are times to just shut the hell up.  Wisdom lies in knowing which times are which. 

The cats spent the night upstairs, locked away, while the basement drained and dried out.  I spent the lion’s share of the weekend chasing away the damp, musty smell that comes from a wet basement.  I burned so many candles you’d think we were holding a seance. 

On Sunday we discovered a large, dead bullfrog in our front yard.  Which is pretty unusual considering we don’t live anywhere near a bullfrog habitat.  So I guess our rain could be classified as a frog-choker.  Either that or it rained frogs that night and this is one of the signs of the coming Apocalypse. 

The forecast for tonight is rain.  As saturated as the ground is, I’m preparing by taking everything up off the basement floor that I can, and keeping the sump at the ready. 

What fun. 

 

— Mox

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