A little bit of rain helps a lot. More news about the weather? This year has seen lots of rain, then extreme heat, then some of the unhealthiest air in the world – and within a day the air clears, tensions ease, dust settles, and lawns try to remember how to grow. Just before November.
From June 21 until October 21 there was less than an inch of rain in the area. (Tidbits October 1 2022) Lawns turned from green to brown to grey to dust – except perhaps over septic fields or where people watered the grass. That dryness is why forest fires started in the temperate rain forests fifty miles east of the island. Winds that normally blow west to east decided to blow east to west and the region had some of the worst air in the world. Cars accumulated ash as well as dust.
And now it is raining. It isn’t a heavy rain; just soft showers dribbling into gutters and downspouts, probably upsetting some spider webs. In about a day the air is back to normal.
Ironically, Whidbey’s famous views have been unavailable during the smoky period, and now the views are hidden by rain clouds. There was probably a clear moment in there, but it was probably during the night.
One caution is the roads. They can be slick because months of car and truck oils haven’t been washed away. For a while that oil can be as troublesome as a bit of snow. It is a good idea to let the rains do their work for a day or so.
Usually autumn lasts from mid-September to the beginning of November. November is the stormiest month, historically. Long-term forecasts are projecting lots of precipitation and wind and cold, so autumn may only last two weeks. Of course, conditions like that can also mean an early ski season. We’ll wait and watch and see.
In the meantime, the ground gets a chance to soak up moisture. Deer, bunnies, and birds take involuntary showers. Cars may wear rivulets of mud as dust is washed by rain. Now, it is time for some extra layers, maybe a fire in the fireplace, and preparing for the next few months of welcome rain.