Today is a favorite sort of days. Earlier, I was awakened by the sound of a torrential rain storm. The rain came straight down and pounded the deck and umbrellas. That was the sound I heard: rain hitting the umbrellas, almost as good as rain on a tin roof. The rain stopped quickly giving me enough time to run for the papers. In a bit after that, it started again but far more gently. The day is dark, and I have turned on a light. Sitting in my house surrounded by rain with a single light brightening the room gives me a cozy feeling, a feeling of being safe and warm and dry. Those feelings coupled with the wonderful sounds of rain are why this sort of day is a favorite.
Yesterday a giant crow used my deck as a perch. I heard him first and looked out the window to investigate the sounds I was hearing. He was strutting up and down and stopping occasionally to caw. I think it’s the same crow who visits often. He never eats from the feeders but just sits on a branch near the deck making noise or preening his feathers. I think he’s beautiful. I also think he’s huge.
As a kid, I don’t remember ever watching birds, except seagulls. Flowers and gardens went unnoticed, but the garbage truck got a great deal of attention as did the garbage man. The rag man too was a favorite with his horse and wagon. Back then, my world was filled with people who did the neatest things and roamed the neighborhoods offering their services. The sharpening knives and scissors man rode a bicycle and shouted as he pedaled through. My mother sometimes sent me with her knives. The milk man came every other day, and I could hear the clinking of the bottles and the sound of his truck left running as he went from neighbor to neighbor. The trash truck came once a week, and my dad dragged his barrels to the sidewalk before he left for work. The ice cream man came about the same time every afternoon. He had a bell, a sound we all recognized as belonging to Johnny and his truck. The paperboy threw our paper against the front door usually about an hour before school. He came around himself to collect for the paper every week. We knew the mailman. He was on our route for years. Around my birthday, I’d sit on the steps and wait for him to come hoping he was bringing cards with a bit of cash inside.
I have a newspaper person who delivers before I’m awake. I’ve never seen her even though she’s delivered my papers for years. Bill is my mailman, and he waves from his truck as he leaves the mail in the box across the street. If I have a package, he’ll walk it over to my house. My landscaper lives next door.
My childhood was wonderfully filled with the most interesting people who were pieces in the fabric of my life. Some came every day, some less often, but I knew them. They were like friends in an odd sort of way. Now I only have two I know and one I don’t. It makes my world emptier and far less interesting.