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Through the window at Bella Umbrella

“Whatever good things the god sees fit to give you,
Take them with thanks; don’t think you can save them up
For a rainy day.  You want to be able to say
You’ve lived a happy life.  It’s reason, good sense,
That takes away your cares; it isn’t owning
A house at the shore that has a commanding view.
He only changes his scene, he doesn’t change
His mind, who rushes to go abroad.  How many
Are busy going elsewhere getting nowhere;
But if you have a healthy attitude,
Then what you’re seeking to find can always be found
Right where you are . . .”
— from The Epistles of Horace, translated by David Ferry

 

Raining on My Parade

September 30, 2013

Saturday morning at the Prosser Balloon Rally

Saturday morning at the Prosser Balloon Rally

Rained out!  Our weekend plans were wrecked by rain.  I had been so looking forward to this weekend getaway with my husband, our first time attending the annual Prosser, Washington Balloon Rally.  Over 20 balloons were scheduled to take off at dawn on Friday, Saturday and Sunday mornings from a field in Prosser, the heart of Washington’s wine country.  We left after work on Friday, driving in the dark and arriving in Prosser at midnight.  It rained off and on all night, and although the actual rain drops had stopped falling by 6 a.m., the event organizers decided to cancel Saturday’s morning launch because of the deteriorating forecast.  And since the weather was supposed to only get worst, George and I decided not to hang around for the evening’s balloon lighting or Sunday morning’s lift-off, which were both in jeopardy.

Disappointment!  I can only imagine how many colorful photos I could have taken had the balloons actually been filled and launched into the sky.  We will have to try again another year.

And so, all I have to share with you today are photos of clouds and rain on our long drive back to Seattle.  We opted to drive back along the Columbia River Gorge since we were in no rush to get back.

View from Horse Heaven Hills overlooking the Prosser area

View from Horse Heaven Hills overlooking the Prosser area

Autumn landscape at Horse Heaven Hills lookout

Autumn landscape at Horse Heaven Hills lookout

Eastern Washington with cloud bank

Eastern Washington with cloud bank

Driving the highway from Prosser to the Columbia River

Driving the highway from Prosser to the Columbia River

Old and new:  wind generators and power lines along the Columbia River

Old and new: wind generators and power lines along the Columbia River

Driving I-5 north to Seattle.  These rain clouds were heading east toward Prosser.

Driving I-5 north to Seattle. These rain clouds were heading east toward Prosser.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“To make my days deserving of preservation, I have to give myself ample time for reflection and repose. . . . It feels as if such entries add an extra layer to living.”     — Wendy Lustbader, The Unexpected Pleasures of Growing Old

Rain on the glass at the Volunteer Park Conservatory

Rain on the glass at the Volunteer Park Conservatory

These short winter days slip by so quickly, especially if it’s rainy, dark, and gloomy.  Thank goodness this blog gives me the impetus to find something in my days to share with you, my readers.  Sometimes it’s just the excuse I need to see what’s happening at the Volunteer Park Conservatory, which is a heaven-sent destination on a rainy winter day.  The warm humid interior is a comforting contrast to the cold outdoors.  Even if I do have to wait for the fog to clear from my camera lenses!

My eyes were soothed by patterns and graceful, curving lines on this particular visit.  Here are a few photos:

Branching pattern with brilliant blue stem

Branching pattern with brilliant blue stem

Ferns with subtle purples and greens

Ferns with subtle purples and greens

Graceful leaves, almost translucent against the glass windows

Graceful leaves, almost translucent against the glass windows

Delicate beaded edges grace these cascading leaves

Delicate beaded edges grace these cascading leaves

Hanging pitcher plant

Hanging pitcher plant

 

 

 

 

Falling Rain

May 30, 2010

May skies

“Into each life some rain must fall,
Some days must be dark and dreary.”
     — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, from “The Rainy Day”

“The rain is falling all around,
     It falls on field and tree,
It rains on the umbrellas here,
     And on the ships at sea.”
     — Robert Louis Stevenson, “Rain”

Spring rains might bring gray and gloomy days, but they still hold the promise of life and green things growing.

Poppy with raindrops

Iris after rain

Iris petal with raindrops

Winter Reading

January 23, 2010

My stack of books for winter reading

The landscape of my mind, as reflected in the books I’m currently reading, seems to mirror the winter outside.  For me, it’s a time for introspection. I seem drawn to books about people living in solitude and silence.

I especially enjoyed Sara Maitland’s A Book of Silence about her experiences living apart in the country.  She speaks to a growing need for silence and solitude in her life as she ages.  I found the book quite fascinating.  I may have some hermit tendencies myself.

Rainy Day Pleasures

November 6, 2009

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Rainy day pleasures -- piles of books

“Heaven must be a place where the library is open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.”
     — Flavia, a character from The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Yesterday was my day off work, and because it was rainy outside, I did not feel guilty about curling up with some good books.  Right now I have a rather daunting stack of books to read, but I can think of few greater pleasures than reading them, one after the other, with our cat Jellybean warming my lap.

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Jellybean warms my lap as I read on the couch.