Last Friday, after months of planning and writing to get my new website up and running, my plan was to celebrate the launch with a little party on the patio. Just a small party, mind you, as in just me and Carrie. On the menu were grilled lamb chops, roasted fingerling potatoes, and a salad made from goodies straight out of my garden. And to chase it all down – a Pinot Noir I’d never had before.
That morning, however, it started to rain. I’d been so busy that I hadn’t bothered to watch the weather the previous three days. When I finally did tune in, I realized that the party would have to take place indoors. The forecast called for rain, and lots of it.
What started as a garden-variety shower quickly turned into a toad-strangling deluge. By mid-morning, the rain was coming down so hard the gutters were overflowing, and I watched in horror as precious topsoil ran down the driveway. Streams began to form in my yard (my property takes water from a dozen surrounding lots). The streams soon became rivers, and at the lowest point in my yard the water was waist deep. Sure, we needed rain, but come on!
And to add insult to injury, the power went out. Then it came on again, at which point I reset all the clocks. Then it went off again, and stayed off for a few hours. The batteries on my computer and cell phone were dangerously low, and I had no way to charge either one (I’d just purchased a new phone, but forgot to get a car charger.) Then I got a call from a friend in L.A. who said the website wasn’t working for Mac/Firefox users, so I quickly had to shoot a few emails and make a few phone calls before I lost all contact with the world.
Meanwhile, I couldn’t get either of my dogs to go out in the rain, so they both peed in the house. Not once, but twice. (I did manage to get them to poop beneath the covered patio.)
In two hours, the rainfall total was 2.7 inches! Just thirty miles northeast of Tulsa, some areas got over 8 inches, and thousands of people were forced from their homes as a result of rising floodwaters.
When the rain finally subsided to the point where I could inspect my yard and gardens, my worst fear was realized -- at least half of the mulch I’d applied the week before to my garden beds (88 bags) was scattered all over my lawn. Have you ever tried to pick up bark mulch in the lawn? Trust me -- it’s a giant pain in the butt. However, my raised-bed veggie garden was relatively unscathed, and I managed to harvest some tasty spinach, lettuce, arugula, basil, parsley, and onions for the salad.
But hey, that’s gardening, right? As for the dinner, it was delicious. And the wine – a very reasonably priced Podera Colla from the Langhe region in Italy (Campo Romano to be exact) was quite good.
As of this morning, the 72-hour rainfall total measured 4.3 inches. And guess what? We’re supposed to get thunderstorms tonight! The mulch is still in the grass, and it’s going to stay there until we get a few days without rain.
And Finally – A Special Thanks
I just read Susan Harris’ review of my website at www.gardenrant.comand it was a good one. Thanks, Susan! Now, lest you think we’ve started our own mutual admiration society, let me say that Susan and I have never met, and we’ve only talked on the phone once and exchanged emails maybe three or four times. However, I’ve been a secret admirer of hers for quite some time. Susan’s take on gardening is akin to mine, and for those of you unfamiliar with her work, I urge you to check out Garden Rant as well as www.sustainable-gardening.comand www.sustainablegardeningblog.comand www.greenthegrounds.organd www.regionalgardengurus.com. (Yes, Susan’s seemingly everywhere!)
Thanks also to those of you who’ve found my website and posted such kind comments on my blog. I’m hugely excited to finally be able to connect with you in a more direct way.