According to the weather forecast, last Saturday was predicted to be our last pleasant day for a long while. It’s Tuesday night now, and so far that forecast has been pretty much spot on. This past Sunday, we got slapped with our first real cold weather of the season, hard frost at night, temperatures in the 30’s all day, raw and windy. On Sunday night, I went to a friend’s house to watch an evening football game, which lasted until well after midnight. (The game was being played in New England, which was quite a bit colder; everyone on the field and sidelines looked utterly miserable, and I was glad to be in a warm house.) Walking back to my car after the game, the air was bitterly cold and clear, the stars crackled and sparkled in the sky above, and each breath felt like I was frosting my lungs. I was later told that it got down to 10 degrees that night, which was about what it felt like.
Monday was more of the same. I had plenty of work to keep me inside; and frankly I wasn’t all that tempted to go out exploring. Here’s what Monday looked like. What it felt like was fall swiftly (and a bit prematurely) turning into winter.
On Monday night, we got our first rain of the month, and it kept on drizzling this morning (and all afternoon, too). I did my normal Tofu delivery rounds in Charlottesville, a damp, chilly task on a day that never got much above freezing. Years ago, when I happened to be in Seattle during late December, I came to the conclusion that rain, combined with temperatures just a few degrees above freezing (which soaks right through your clothes), is actually much colder and more uncomfortable than snow combined with sub-freezing temperatures (which often bounces off). By the time I got back from my delivery rounds, I was well chilled. Here are a few pictures of the neighborhood near to Twin Oaks, taken out the window of the Tofu Truck. Just rolling down the window was about as close to the elements as I wanted to get today.
A couple photos of the South Anna river, the old mill, and the dam. During the summer, there is so much thick annual vegetation that you can’t even see the river from the road. This is not the case this time of year.
Eventually, I think that all the rain is going to push the water level up higher in the river. But it’s been so dry this month, that the first couple of inches of rain will most likely be absorbed into the ground before there is a whole lot of runoff.
At the time I’m writing this–10 PM–we’ve had about an inch and a half and it’s still coming down. I’m curious to see what effect the rain, our first in about a month, will have on whatever is still alive out there, whether it will bring out any mushrooms, or whether it’s all just done for the season. We’ll see what tomorrow looks like.