Day 2: Looking at a Picture

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Today was dark, rainy and cold in Tulsa. This time of year is typically very slow around my office, and today was a prime example. I normally work until 6, but since we had everything done early I left at about 4:30. Sadly, it was already pretty dark even that early in the day.

At home, instead of the usual happy lab dance, I was greeted by a forlorn Theta who refused to leave the couch. He was sad because his playmate (we kept a friend’s dog for about a week) had gone home and he’d had to spend all day alone. That and he’s surprisingly fastidious when it comes to keeping his paws dry, so he was bummed about the weather too.

There’s rain, and there’s rain. Here in Oklahoma, we tend to have weather in extremes. Wind forms tornadoes, rain forms floods and storms, we don’t really get snow so much as ice, and if it gets hot in the summer the temperatures will break into the triple digits for weeks on end. It’s rare that we enjoy a mild spring or a gentle, refreshing rain.

Days like this make me think of the Pacific northwest. I’ve only visited once, and we have another trip on the books for later this year, but it’s always pulled me. The rain there is like something I spent many years reading about, but didn’t fully understand until I visited. It’s this gentle, intermittent force that makes everything so green and lush as to look fake. Flowers bloom in an astonishing array of colors, and hold up to the water just fine. It’s not ever a pounding, relentless deluge but just a fine mist of rejuvenation. I grew up in the mountains of the southwest, where a good rain was only good if it stopped before it became a force of destruction. It was appreciated while it lessened the dust and quenched the fields, but soon it would wash loose rocks and boulders and cause more damage than relief. To see the beauty of a real, life giving and sustaining rain in the Pacific northwest is something I feel privileged to experience, and that I long to see again.

Needless to say, the weather was not conducive to outside activity so some extra time spent writing and planning had to suffice. Tomorrow there will be no excuse for missing spin class and yoga at the gym, and a good muddy hour or two at the dog park for Theta, who will gladly put up with muddy paws if he gets to play with the big dogs.

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