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Rain, Rain, Stay Stay Stay

I love being outside in the rain.  I know, I know, you probably think I’m kidding–but I’m not.  I adore being in the woods and listening to the inconsistent sound of rain drops through the dense layering of various types of leaves. Time spent messing about in sailboats in the rain, rigging or racing them, especially during Maine summers is calming. When I exercise in the rain I often have the road to myself, paths are softer, and am able to keep myself cooler–plus, dodging puddles helps the time go by.

rain coat 1

The key, for me, is being dressed for the weather. When out for a walk or sailing in the rain I have my fowl weather gear on, proper footwear to keep my feet both warm and dry, and a baseball cap. The last Gill coastal foul weather coat I bought when teaching sailing lessons on the island of Vinalhaven lasted about 20 years. I replaced it with a  more up to date version when the last one started to leak.  Something like this:

Click here

I would be impressed if this one lasts 20 years (nothing’s built to last the way things were once built) but I decided to spend more on a Gill because the quality and comfort help me enjoy the rain and I’m fairly confident it will last longer than its competitors. The fleece lined pockets are always appreciated when I’m walking or sailing. I know this is starting to sound like an advertisement but I assure you it isn’t.  I just really believe dressing properly helps one enjoy the conditions better.

rain coat 2

Hands down my favorite thing to do in a rainstorm is to sleep in a tent or on a sailboat.  As some of you might remember, I grew up camping all summer for many summers in NH. We didn’t go home when it rained but we would play in the tents, and occasionally my parents would break up the long wet stretches with a movie (who wouldn’t fall in love with getting to go see The Muppets), and of course, we’d sleep in our tents. The sound of the pitter patter on the tent or the tarp above the tent would lull me to sleep in the most peaceful of ways.  Now, when it rains, I keep my bedroom window open, with hopes of listening to those drops on the maple leaves outside my window before drifting off. It isn’t the same as being outside but it still is lovely.

raincoat 3Would I choose a rainy day over a sunny day?  Absolutely not.  But when the rainy days happen, I certainly don’t let them keep me inside.

 

Peaks Island Field Trip–My 40th Birthday Present

On May 30th, I turned 40. We celebrated early, with dancing and a birthday party, with friends and family, and with food and drink the weekend prior.  It was a lovely way to shift decades. But the best possible birthday celebration happened on my actual birthday. I was able to go on a field trip to Peaks Island with my daughter’s class. I couldn’t think of a better way to usher in another decade–a day spent on ferries, messing about with tide pools, humming to periwinkles to bring them out of their shells, building sandcastles, comparing various types of seaweed, eating lunch on a beach while observing seagulls and a pair of soaring osprey, and bringing 18 incredibly cute kindergarteners to an island off the coast of Portland.

peaks island lighthouses

peaks island lobster boat

peaks sign

peaks tide pools

peaks rocks

peaks lobster sign

It is hard to believe that in a few weeks I’ll be done with kindergarten… I’m so grateful that I could shift my work responsibilities around to make it possible to go on this field trip. I’m even more grateful for wonderful teachers who bring the magic of the natural world into the hearts of children who may not otherwise find it.

peaks mrs sherry

peaks anica ferry

I’m so grateful that the first forty years of my life have brought me to where I am today. I know another ten will slip by in an instant.  My son will be graduating from high school and my daughter will be 16 when I turn 50.  I hope to go on as many field trips as they’ll allow in those ten years… these precious days go so quickly.