Saturday, December 31, 2011

Crusty Finish to 2011

"Periods of rain and freezing rain... winds light and variable" - that's the forecast for us this last day of 2011. I can see crusty slush covering the roof outside my window even as water drips from the slush melting off the roof above. The stone walkway and hard surfaces in the perennial garden are coated with a thin and uninviting film of slipperiness.
The hemlocks, firs, and pines droop their boughs toward the russet and brown stalks of fern and dried leaf litter poking up through patches of snow and slush below. The ice on the vernal pool - just visible through the barren oak, ash, and red maple trunks - is degrading to slush itself, taking on a smoky gray hue with a sheen of olive green.
Along the trails through the property are ice droplets hanging delicately from the tips of paper thin beech leaves. When the sun breaks through the overcast layer of clouds, the ice drops will shine in brilliance for a few moments before the warmth melts them into a steady stream of drip drip drip to mark the end of this crusty, slushy, sometimes slippery but gloriously wonderful old year.

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