Drip Drip Drip

“It’s no good for nothin’.”

The “it” in question is the weather: rainy, foggy, overcast weather. Ottawa in late November is not known for its nice weather, but this weather is not just not nice. This weather has nothing to recommend it.

It’s no good for activities that I enjoy in spring and fall: planting, whether plants or bulbs. It’s no good for activities that I enjoy in summer: walking and kayaking. It’s a rain storm, in one sense, but without any storm dramatics: nasty, but in a depressingly average way. It’s cold, damp, grey grey grey, and no good for nothin’, says me. Certainly not for bird watching or for bridge photography, just to pick two examples at random. No, this weather has a perverse lack of charm, and I don’t mind saying so.

“Just relax into it.”

The “it” is still the weather, but the speaker in question is my gardener. Wearing lightweight charcoal rain gear that keeps his layered work clothes dry while allowing him a good range of motion, he wouldn’t be out of place on a golf course. Well, except for his Nordic-style wool ski hat, with pointy peak, ear flaps, and dangling yarn ties.

Standing in a garden as much his as mine, really, given his involvement over many years, he gestures with the pruning shears and tells me about his recent trip back to Holland. Hitting similar drippy, grey weather, he went around annoyed for a few days. And who could blame him? This was not what he’d wanted. This was not how he’d seen himself in his mind’s eye, enjoying a visit home.

I nod in complete understanding. But there’s more to the story.

He grins and nods his head, in turn, making the dangling tie-strings swing around a bit, for emphasis.

“After a few days, I just relaxed into it. It was all right.”

He finishes his end-of-season pruning and heads off, leaving me with a tidy yard ready for winter and a new mantra for drippy weather I can’t change.

Just relax into it.

I’m guessing it might apply to drippy things other than the weather.


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8 Responses to Drip Drip Drip

  1. JimTaylor says:

    Somewhere in my archives I have a story about two men who went out for a walk on a day such as you describe. At the end of the walk, one man complained about the weather, the lack of view, the rough terrain, etc. The other man was happy — he hadn’t come out for a view, a blue sky, a smooth path; he had come out for a walk, and that’s exactly what he had.
    I must do something with that story someday. Oh, maybe I just have.
    Jim T

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Jim T – Delightful. There’s something from AA about expectations and reality – if they don’t match, adjust your expectations.

  2. I think it is called, “going with the grain,” as film maker Jim Jarmusch put it. Funny how some phrases, tossed offhand, help one to cope.

    Besides, this too shall pass, altho it is never said how soon. But today there is SUN. Enjoy!

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Barbara – Never said how soon, or how painfully. Kidney stones also “pass.” But indeed, it makes the sun more special, that’s for sure.

  3. John H says:

    It is also sometimes called “going with the flow” which might be just a little more appropriate!
    I once lived in Western Australia where one would say “Bake, bake, bake,”
    as one gradually got really tired of nine months of clear blue skies and intense sunshine. In high summer it caused intense perspiration. Then you might well say “Drip, drip, drip” and have a cold shower to cool off.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      John – 🙂 There you go – like many things, weather is relatively good or bad, not absolutely so. I think I’d have trouble tolerating nine months of any on thing, even blue skies and sunny, sunny days. Even with my newfound mantra.

  4. Paul Coffman says:


    I like the fall,
    The mist and all.
    I like the night owl’s
    Lonely call__
    And wailing sound
    Of wind around.

    I like the gray
    November day,
    And bare dead boughs
    That coldly sway
    Against my pane.
    I like the rain.

    I like to sit
    And laugh at it__
    And tend
    My cozy fire a bit.
    I like the fall__
    The mist and all.

    Dixie Willson

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Paul – Delightful. Many thanks. Now there’s someone who’s learned to go with the grain/flow, and to relax into it, in spades.

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