From Foulness to Serenity~

Dawn crept under the window shutters yesterday morning, and as I woke something told me this day would be different from the past few weeks. I had closed them to keep the cold and damp of the weeks before out. Our bed linen has been clammy from the accumulated moisture in the air and it’s been a bitter affair climbing into bed at night. I thought perhaps closing them would help. It did––a bit––but the dryer worked far better.

There was no sign of sun yesterday but something created a flirting promise of change from foul to fair. What was it I sensed about the day that was different? Certainly not the forecast; I rarely rely on that. Was it less humid than the preceding days and my body subconsciously relayed the message to my monkey brain? Or does the body know when the barometric pressure changes? I know some people with arthritis claim they can predict rain from the pain in their joints as the low pressure descends. One man has dedicated a blog to the whole notion, complete with graphs of barometric pressure readings and his subjective pain measured on a scale of 0-10. The National Institutes of Health has done studies trying to figure it out. The results are inconclusive, but still, I think, there is something there.

It was still overcast yesterday morning, although the cloud cover had lifted, and the dark jade-green days seemed to have given way to a lighter shade of pale. My mood became more elastic, or as H.D. Thoreau put it: “The change from foulness to serenity… instantaneous.” As birds out in the yard returned with the industriousness of the starving I felt a return of a greener world, shedding the one of mushrooms, moss, and mold we have been living with since I got home.

Our dog Kashá must have felt it too. She took a tour out into the potrero to investigate what smells had changed during the dank days of the past weeks. She trotted with her tail high, stopped to sniff, and vigorously scratched the ground throwing grass and water out behind her (letting everyone know who was boss of this outfit). Then she sprinted to my side, all full of Dog Joy. When she is excited like this her eyes are shiny and so clear I can see directly into her soul. There is no malice to be found in that space, only deep and abiding love.

Slowly during the day the clouds parted and sun dared show herself. Briefly at first… as though afraid all of us might rebuke her for her time away. (Doing what?, is what I want to know.) None of us dared say anything bad, for fear she’d leave again, and over time she became more confident. By afternoon she had shouldered most of the clouds out of her way.

I needed to go into Puerto Viejo for groceries and all along the road people were out of their houses walking in shorts and T-shirts, visiting with neighbors; scantily clad tourists rode rental bikes in large flocks, slipstreaming around puddles and holes in the road; dogs investigated here and there rediscovering and establishing territories; and laundry was strung everywhere: on lines and on bushes and barbed-wire fences. All the houses were flung wide open and furniture soaked from the flooding had been hauled outdoors where it steamed like big Chinese hum-bows in the sun.

The weather is absolutely gorgeous today; not a cloud in the sky. I’m sure it will rain again in the next couple of days. The atmosphere can’t cope with all this moisture rising up without sending some of it back down on us again.

But we are, at least for now, into some very nice weather.