The mud-flats are exposed today. Streams channel their way out to join the river. The clean-washed sand is covered with tracks from the seabirds. And the ducks. White and amber shelducks puddle their way out to the freshwater, hunting for food.
The wet and the tractors have combined to make a morass of the lane. Mud up to my ankles. My boots are released from its embrace with a loud squelch. The puddles have joined together into a stream, running down the grassy centre. In the hedgerows, the dunnocks flit from branch to branch, a gossiping bunch. The clouds gather over the horizon, and head my way. Sunshine and rain combine to give glorious rainbows and soggy hat. Climbing up the hill, the full force of the squall hits head on, before ceasing abruptly. Fields spread out before me, last years golden stubble poking through the new growth. Across the ancient stone bridge. The usual trickle has become a torrent, roaring its way down to the sea. Then round the bend and on to the road. Potholes overflowing. Raindrops slowly begin their dance on the surface. In the shelter of a far hedge, a flash of white catches my eye. Two deer, sheltering from the onslaught. The sun emerges from behind the clouds again, and the deer lift their heads in greeting. I turn the next corner. Ahead lies the sea, a shimmering mass of light. Homeward bound.
While the sun shines, I break free from the house. After a night of rain, the street is washed clean, puddles lying at the edges. The grass on the verges squelches under my feet, mud oozing over my boots. I stroll along the road, idly watching the world pass by. The drainage ditch is overflowing. A new pond has formed in the field over the stone wall. The sea-birds seem to have migrated over from the seashore. I stand and watch as the oyster-catchers paddle in the edge, and the curlews peck at the soil. The gulls float serenely on the pool. The cows seem a little bemused by their company, stood staring from the edges of the field. They seem to be having a soggy time, green shoots muddied by their feet. The stream churns through the field, stirring up the mud on its way to the sea.