Wellingtons on; scarves around neck; umbrellas up and a torch – just in case.
The white rocks dazzle in the darkness,
Wetness presses in on the sides with shadows,
The dim gravel driveway looms like a long, dusky tunnel.
Yellow and gold rocks direct our way,
Puddles shimmer in the pot-holes.
We turn left onto Pound Lane.
Now the road is black with glittering rivulets of water,
Only an occasional light shines out from squat cottages.
My boots make a pleasant squashing sound on the wet road,
Suddenly car lights assail,
I jump up onto the wet embankment,
Caia saunters to the right,
The car passes in consternation at two huge umbrellas in the dark night.
On we stroll,
Dribble, trickle splashes the soft rain on top of our umbrellas,
The air feels massive, swirling and fresh,
The crushed rock crunches under our boots when we reach Silver Birches,
A gentle good bye hug in the rain and Caia slips off in the darkness.
Now all alone yet feeling secure with my surroundings.
At the red mail-box I turn right onto the Garden Stream driveway,
Vickie’s lights are out so the path is slightly sinister.
My umbrella gets caught in wet vines and branches and tears a prong from its fabric rendering it useless.
Now I’m in perfect darkness so I turn on my torch.
Down the damp, wood steps; then a small turn around the drenched brush and I’m on the cushiony bark chips.
I uneasily wonder if the Badgers are out in the rain.
I climb up the small slope and Stanton House emerges – welcoming,
The door is still unlocked,
Puddles of water form on the 19th century tiled-floor,
My umbrella is put out to dry and my feet slip effortlessly out of my big Wellingtons.
My bare feet feel saucy as I walk to the kitchen and slip the key
on the hook,
Hugh smiles in progress of putting the tea trolley away,
My cheeks are rosy and I sigh in heavenly contentment.
Latter, in bed, I want more and shove my window open,
The patter of rain and the gentle call of the wind caresses my arms and face,
I imagine I’m in a tent with rain pinging my shelter,
I can smell drenched clumps of grass while I float off to sleep.