Posted in Air, Autumn, Change, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Portals & Pathways, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Water, Wonder, Woods

After the storm

Adrift on Back Creek
Adrift on Back Creek


Let my dreams while I’m wide-awake
loose. Let me be drowned, baptized,
in the light given me. Day comes around,
night, fall, winter, spring,
summer. Leaves overhead, underfoot.
Waves arrive, buffets from friends
offended, enemies. Let it all come:
this is my way, this is the canoe I’m in.

~ William Stafford

High tide in the woods
High tide in the woods.  (Taken with Lulu.)

Sometimes the beauty of this place almost takes my breath away.  When I’m not wrapped up in to-do lists and steaming off wallpaper and trying to keep up with all that needs to be done, when I’m outside walking in whatever weather the day brings, I become so enchanted that I forget about the work of being here.  It is a gift of grace, I think, to be able to spend time exploring in the woods or sitting on one of the benches or finding new pathways to walk.

This morning, after the water returned to the creek.
This morning, after the water returned to the creek.

Yesterday’s storm and unusual high tide were amazing.  A little frightening, but mostly reassuring.  When I first saw the water covering the path through the woods, I was astonished that the creek could and would expand so far inland.  But it also gave me a chance to see for myself what we’ve been told through anecdotes, elevation certificates, and homeowner’s insurance:  the house is not in a flood zone.  It might become waterfront property as the seas rise, but barring a major catastrophe, the house won’t be floating away.

Sunset, after the storm blew through.
Sunset, after the storm blew through.

I hoped to show you some photos I took during the storm, but most are so bad that it’s not worth posting them.  When I went out to have a look around, it was windy, raining heavily, and dark.  I took Lulu, the everything-proof camera, and the flash was necessary to be able to see anything at all.  Have you ever used a flash in a heavy rainstorm?  Most of what you get in the image are lit up raindrops.  Pretty, in its way, but not very good at showing you the details of what’s behind the curtain of heavy rain.

It wasn’t until sunset that the world outside lightened up, and the sky turned the most amazing shades of purple and magenta.  Still, it was too dark to capture the tide in places we’ve never seen it.  Oh, and the lagoon!  Wow.  The water level was incredibly high.

October 2013 049a

For the first time since we moved here, the boardwalk to the dock was underwater at high tide.

Another Lulu picture.
Another Lulu picture.

What fascinated me this morning is the evidence of how gentle the tide was when it made its way through the woods and the marsh and into the backyard.

The boardwalk this morning.
The boardwalk this morning.  (It looked wobbly and off-kilter prior to the storm so, as far as I can tell, there was no damage to it at all.)

I was thinking “storm surge,” water swelling and crashing, when in fact it was, more or less, a gentle rising of water onto the land and through the woods.  I was expecting to walk on boggy paths and find debris everywhere when I went out for my walk today.  But it looked, more or less, the same.  The ground was wet, but still firm.  The pine needles were swirled around in a variety of patterns, but hadn’t washed away when the tide receded.  Even the bones I found in the woods were still there, jostled a little, but not taken with the water.

Skull in the woods
Skull in the woods

There were branches down from the strong winds, but none of the trees toppled over.  Leaves got blown around and some of the trees were left with bald spots.

Storm decoration
Storm decoration

All things considered, Mother Nature was rather gentle with us yesterday.

All seems to be well in the woods.
All seems to be well in the woods.

There is so much happening around here that I’d love to be able to show and tell, but I realized today that it’s almost impossible for me to keep up with the changes.  Someday I may get back to the beach and show you the abstract shots of the waves and water I took.  Someday I may get back to the pavilion to show you what it looks like now that 5 tons (!!!) of garbage have been hauled away.  Someday I may get back to the guest bedroom to show you the transformation that took place with a little paint and arranging of furniture.  Someday.

Stuck on you
Stuck on you

That’s about it from the Wabi-Sabi Ranch for today.  Thank you for stopping by and joining me on a walk to see what the storm wrought.  The weather has cooled off, and although it’s still cloudy, it’s a great day to spend outdoors.  I’ll meet you out there later, after I’ve accomplished some of my to-do list for the day.

It's a beautiful world
It’s a beautiful world

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

In conclusion
In conclusion


Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

17 thoughts on “After the storm

  1. Loved the before and after pictures! We are getting pounded with rain and winds today, and it is supposed to rain through the weekend. I feel bad because we have dear friends from Connecticut flying in on Friday, and we wanted warm and sunny days for the beach like last weekend. Can’t even take them up to Chincoteague to see the ponies because the refuge is closed due to the shutdown.


    1. Thank you, Susan. 🙂 The rain and wind are just getting started here. Rainy, windy weather seems to be in the forecast through the weekend. Hopefully you can find some lovely indoor things to do with your friends. I wish the government would get its act together. I was hoping to spend some time at Assateague and Chincoteague over the next few weeks. The state park at Assateague is still open, but it’s a small area with not much to explore. You might be able to see the ponies on the causeway going to Assateague State Park. They frequently hang out in that area, near the marshes. Not sure that would be much help, though, with the weather.


Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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