The weather man lied again. I should’ve known when I requested a personal day a week ahead of time that the predictions might be wrong – – that the forecast would change, as it inevitably seems to do whenever I have plans. Maybe Mother Nature has it out for me? Or, maybe, she has plotted to alter my plans for some unknown purpose yet to be revealed.
A week of beautiful weather – warm temperatures, clear skies, sunshine. It was awesome. Except the blooming tulip field was miserable. What had already been called a shorter, sparser crop than in previous years suffered terribly under the out-of-the-norm heat. And then the long overdue rain could do little to salvage the flowers.
It’s like the weather flip flopped. What should’ve been gloomy and wet, was anything but. What should’ve been comfortable, dry and mildly sunny became a slippery, chilly, dreary day. Nevertheless, I insisted the girls and I would try for the fields. We dressed in compatible colors, selected footwear we could (theoretically) clean, and located our umbrellas. And though I’d splurged on cute umbrellas once before, they somehow clashed with our attire and we desperately need to invest in cute rain boots and slickers. The voice in my head whispers: “someday soon… charge it!” But I decline.
After confirming Chi had earned her straight-A report card in a “student-led conference,” we returned home in pouring rain. It seemed as though it would never let up. I checked the field report on FB, inquired as to whether the daring could still venture out in the soggy fields. I was assured that at noon, they’d be open for business regardless of the precipitation.
We had the field mostly to ourselves, which was no surprise considering the puddles and mud that slurped and sucked at our shoes with each step. Ri loved the mess. The gooshy noise as the mud sucked down her shoes was excitingly new. And watching the thick brown ‘paint’ cover her legs as she brushed a shoe across them was safely naughty behavior. Who could fault her for getting a little dirty in all this sludge?
Chi humored me. Despite an unfortunate teenage breakout that turned into a long blemish down her nose, she was a trooper. We covered the mark with purple glitter shadow and dubbed it a trademark. It looked exotic. She looked – as always – stunning.
I realized that our annual sunshine and tulips photos would be a little different this year. And I relished in the time spent with my quickly growing girls.
They traipsed through those fields with their baskets. They pulled at their selected tulips and secured a few bulbs, too.
Laughter caught the wind as they got stuck in the mud, struggled to maintain clean shoes.
Each raised her face to the sky to catch the rain as tiny droplets fell in a shockingly chilly drizzle while we lingered.
And the smiles – – those precious smiles as the camera clicked and froze the moments alone in the fields on a rainy ditch day in the middle of the week.