Relative humidity, dry and wet bulb temperatures, due point, slide rules and saturated air... Well those are words I seem to associate with rain; I am fairly sure that if we tossed them around we could define it. I suppose what I am really driving at here isn't a definition for precipitation, more a definition of our expectations. Lets face it outdoors folk; rain is here to stay, so lets enjoy it. A glorious day in God's good sunshine is certainly something to appreciate but as we seem to be blessed with more rain than shine perhaps some appreciation may lighten our lives just that bit further.
I ran through Hembury Woods on the edge of the moor near Buckfast tonight, it lashed it down with rain. My heart was heavy as I dug into the first leaf mulched beech and oak clad hill, I felt the bite of my shoes as they gripped deep down into the mud and water trickled past, bows dipped heavy with loaded leaves and I topped out of the hill into a clearing near the iron age fort. Blood thumped through my head like a mechanical hammer, I knew it was going to be wet through there so I opened up my stride and struck for the other side with little care or attention to the depth of water in front of me; the dog too opened up his stride and startled a small rabbit who, had it been any other dog, would have been snapped up. Smiling to myself I was actually enjoying the wet as I now trusted the sole unit to grip the cobble-like rocks as I skipped back down toward the river. I took some of my usual turns through the hill and woodland with wet skin soaked and sweating, it was fabulous! There was steam rising from summer's warmth, and the top of the woodland was cloaked in a fine strata of mist, what a time of year, night, day! Back along the river as the night crept into the woodland and took life from the light, the River Dart looked angry, malevolent, or perhaps mischievous as her sides snaked and swelled into eddies and stoppers along the way. As the water falls on the Dart in spate, it glistens red with peat stain, not your normal brown of muddy waters, but a deep deep red that contrasts the summer green from the alders that grow around her banks. Suddenly it was there for a moment! a bar of silver a yard long, topping and tailing to show an ancient eye and the hooked kype of a male jaw; salmon, gone again. I dug into the final hill and again felt the hammer pounding through my veins as I reached the top.
Rain, good isn't it. I hope it comes to visit again soon.
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