November 11th, 2001

caillebotte_man at his window

Long Day

Going around town as the mist built up through the afternoon, I noticed again how different the place looks on a day without shadows. One tends to forget such things through the summer, so that recognizing them again is a bit surprising. All the details are equalized on such a day, their distinctiveness diminished. The well kept lawn and the overgrown lawn, the freshly painted house and the shabby house, all blend together under the grey sky. In the evening, the drizzle began, and slowly the rain gathered into a steady drumming. The rains of autumn here are usually calm, fairly warm rains. They are not like the cold and windswept rains of winter, or the short, furious rains of spring which almost always end with a thundershower. This is a background rain, a piano sonata of rain, softly pattering away while you lose yourself in thought.
caillebotte_man at his window

Happy Kitties

The cats are enjoying the weather. They have insisted on spending much of the day outdoors, one on the front porch, the other on the covered patio out back. (The cats don't like each other.) They seem content to lie there for hours, watching the rain.

I was hoping that there would be a break in the clouds before sunset, as there was during the brief storm we had last week. It is enjoyable to see the late sun falling through silver-rimmed clouds onto the wet landscape. I particularly like those raindrops which hang from the tips of leaves and act as tiny lenses. Looking through them, you can view the inverted scene in exquisitely detailed miniature. Such an image always seems to have a greater clarity than the reality which it reflects.

But no break has come, and now the grey sky has darkened, through bluish slate and on to black. Perhaps the rain will continue tomorrow, and the moment will happen then. Or, perhaps it will clear late tonight, and I will see, through a drop of clear water, the waning moon as an arch among silver clouds below the suspended silhouettes of the trees.