Saturday, September 12, 2015

Best Seat In The House

Actually, it’s not inside the house at all; it’s just outside and to the right side of the entry. At one time, my wife and I could both sit in our porch swing. She’s “grown” a little (and me a LOT), so we now have to use it separately. She uses it through the day while I’m at work, while I use it of an evening when she’s resting in front of the TV. Quite often, the one in the swing has the Mighty Dachshund at their feet. She enjoys the chance to get outside to sniff the air, watch her surroundings and listen to the outside world as much as we do.

With my current breathing problems, I’ve begun sitting there for a couple minutes to catch my breath, nearly every time I take the pooch out, even in the late hours of the night and the wee hours of the morning. She wasn’t sold on the idea at first, but she seems to be starting to enjoy it as much as I do, now, so our time sitting in the darkness is gradually lengthening. Darkness isn’t exactly the right word, since there’s always some form of light to be had. Though I turn off the flashlight, my eyes soon adjust to where I can see more than you might think. Besides light from the sky itself, the moon is often present and bright. Plus, the light on the pole, 200 feet away by the road, casts a good bit of light back to the house.

Sounds are as important as sight, though. The summer bugs are still with us, though waning. The fall bugs are now here, too. Sometimes, we hear coyotes in the distance, or foxes, baying hounds, owls, or animals that we really can’t identify by sound. On occasion, a car makes a low humming sound as its wheels roll along the asphalt of our country road. A couple miles away or so, the sound of tire whine and engine brakes mix with the powerful roar of revved-up semis headed up-grade on the two four-lanes in hearing distance. Sometimes, you hear a party at the neighbors, or them calling their dog. One of the most peaceful, though, is the simple sound of the breeze rustling the tree leaves in the forest that closely surrounds three sides of our home.

For a couple days, the breeze has been blowing day and night. The old-timers would have told me that it was “fixin’ to blow something up.” That something came Wednesday afternoon as rain, costing me work on Thursday. It rained some Friday, too, and all night last night and today (Saturday). Even though it was raining, we kept a short vigil whenever we went outside. When the rain would slack off, the water dripping from the tree leaves let the sound continue, while the shaking leaves of the Quaking Aspens would add a certain volume to the sound.

During the day, we’ve been watching our “lawn deer” graze in the overgrown front yard. The pooch wants to raise a howl at them, but manages to just barely contain her enthusiasm at my “shh.” She’s won’t mind my wife at such times and barks and howls for all she’s worth. It’s likewise with other wildlife we see in the yard. She usually stays quiet and just watches with me. A couple days ago, I heard a mewing sort of sound that I couldn’t quite place. Then, I saw two squirrels in the walnut tree and watched one make the sound to his mate. Soon, his little voice was competing with the distant whine of a jet coming in for a landing at the airport a few miles away. Once it landed, we were back to sounds of nature.

A lot of folks love their televisions, but I prefer the porch swing. I even sit there in cold weather and watch it snow sometimes, but I hope the next chance for THAT is a long ways off! © 2015


deborah harvey said...

love this type of writing.
makes me wish i were there on the porch, too.
i like it in winter. you can hear the snow falling! and you are alone. who else is gonna go out in that weather at night?

Sixbears said...

Fewer and fewer people enjoy the pleasures of just sitting outside. Heck, most houses aren't even built with porches anymore.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

The evening sounds have been so nice lately, crickets, cicadas and owls. Sometimes we can hear very distant music which means there is a wedding at the old stone church a couple of miles from here. The sound drifts through the valley and you can catch just a hint of music. It's an old church built by Irish railroad workers, no electric, heat or a/c and very popular for weddings. There is a kitchen in another building with a screen in long porch with tables or in nice weather they just sit outside. Very pretty.

We like to sit outside too, either on the porch or around the fire pit.

Gorges Smythe said...

Just us crazy people, I guess, dh! lol

If the grid ever goes down long term, Sixbears, people may wish they had porches.

I spent many an evening in my youth sitting around a campfire, Kathy. It's just the porch swing anymore.

Steve Kupillas said...

Wow! You can get your Doxie to shut up with a shh? We have to use a bark collar. It sprays citronella In their face if they bark, I just tried it on my 10 year old Golden. Nuttin' Rats. I guess it's back to yellin' at her.