May has been a depressing month in New York. Cloudy days have far outnumbered those with blue skies and sunshine, and "April showers" have continued on almost a daily basis -- often in the form of steady, heavy rains. While our plight is not as serious as that of the Mississippi flooding, rivers and lakes are at record heights, and many homes along the shores are flooded. After a particularly cold and snowy winter, we were looking forward to spring -- the joke is on us!! The cool, rainy weather has been particularly beneficial to the weeds in my garden. My feeling of accomplishment after weeding last week is somewhat lessened today as I see once again fluorishing weeds throughout the garden. The grass has grown inches since we mowed, and the entire yard has an unkempt look. I love my free-flowing natural garden, but if the rains continue, the weeds will be more plentiful than the flowers.
There are treasures to be enjoyed -- my neighbor's little arbor garden is a Monet masterpiece, with bleeding hearts and forget-me-nots blooming their hearts out. My own bleeding hearts are gorgeous, and the ferns around my little pond are lush and enchanting. Despite the extra rainfall, my herbs are doing well, and my love of gardening and cooking brings great joy as I cut fresh herbs for omelets on lazy Sunday mornings, and add them to sauces simmering on the stove. Fresh herbs add texture and flavor to every dish they enhance.
Of course, I am fortunate to live on high ground -- many gardens along the rivers and lakes are under water. The lovely homes along these waters that we envy on beautiful summer days are paying a huge toll this year for their proximity to the normally peaceful waters.
I am also blessed with a spirit that isn't depressed by long bouts of clouds and rain. In fact, I love the patter of raindrops, and the coziness of the house on a chilly, cloudy day. Of course, I miss early morning coffee on the porch with sunshine filtering through the trees, and puttering in the garden at will. I am tired of wet shoes and soggy sweatshirts, and towels that never feel completely dry. I desperately want to plant some zinnia seeds around my mailbox, but must wait because one rainy deluge will wash the tiny seeds down the street. I haven't planted my tiny impatiens in the windowboxes and planters, because I worry that they will be floating in the soil.
Maybe Memorial Day Weekend will be our turning point. Maybe by then the sun will come out for more than a half hour at a time. Maybe I can spend a day planting my seeds and tending the gardens. Maybe the waters will recede so our waterfront neighbors will be able to determine the extent of damage to their homes and gardens and begin to return to normalcy. And maybe I will be able to stand in the sunshine to watch the Memorial Day Parade in our little town.