“The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful.”

The rain on the roof was the first sound I heard. It was early. Nala jumped off the bed, and I went downstairs to let her out. She didn’t go out into the rain. Henry did. I waited to let him in, left the door open and went back to bed. We all slept another hour.

The rain has stopped. The day is dark and damp. No breeze ruffles the leaves. Everything is still in the heavy air.

A rainy Saturday would never have stopped me when I was a kid. Saturdays were not to be wasted. I used to love to ride my bike as fast as I could through the puddles. The water parted and a tidal wave flew out from each side of my bike. I used to lift my feet off the pedals so my sneakers wouldn’t get wet. I never bypassed a good puddle.

My allowance was fifty cents. My father expected me to save it. He was wrong. Fifty cents was wealth to me. I could shop at Woolworth’s. I loved that store in the square. It was an old building with wooden floors. I remember the toys were in the aisle on the left. I could buy a balsa wood plane for around ten cents. I learned to be careful sliding the pieces as they split easily. The tail was red plastic. My planes dipped and fell when I tossed them in the air. Their landings were seldom soft.

I remember cereal submarines. They were grey plastic, and when filled with baking powder, they dove and surfaced. The tub was the perfect spot to let the sub go. I’d lean on the side of the tub and watch until the baking powder dissolved, and the sub had to be reloaded. We used to open cereals boxes on the bottoms so we could get the prizes. We used to fight over whose turn it was for the toy.

The milk left after I ate all my cereal was sweet. It had cereal crumbs, bits of Rice Krispies floating on the top. I always drank the milk straight from the bowl. Sometimes I was messy, and the milk spilled under my chin.

I heard the gobbles of turkeys this morning. They were close. They were the only bird sounds. I saw the male cardinal fly right by me. The female is usually close, but I didn’t see her. They like the sunflower seeds.

Today I clean upstairs. I noticed cat hair on the toilet seat. I guessed Jack was getting drinks. I know Gwen likes to lie on the cool tile floor. The upstairs is their domain.

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10 Comments on ““The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful.””

  1. Christer. Says:

    We got some rain last evening and during the night but not near enough to what is needed but the day has been cool and nice with a strong wind blowing. All insects stayed in the vegetation 🙂

    I took a trip today and You’ll know why if You read my blog 🙂

    Have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      Hi Christer,
      The sun did come out today, but it was only in the 60’s all day. The downstairs windows are all shut. I’m glad I haven’t put the screens in the doors yet because the dogs need access to the dog door.

      The day is pretty right now. I watched the dogs for a while. They do enjoy that yard.

      Have a wonderful day!

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Does Jack come downstairs at all anymore?
    I had forgotten about the cereal submarines. We used to play with them in the bathroom sink. It was deep enough being one of those old ones from 1920.
    Balsa wood planes split even more easily nowadays. My mother worked at the factory that made them which is in the next town over from your old home. She was there from when we were babies right up until 2009 when she had a minor stroke and couldn’t go back to work. My brothers and I all worked there for short periods of time in high school. We had access to a lot of balsa planes. For decades. Until my mother stopped working there, they were what we gave out at Halloween. That factory also makes the balsa wood models that are very detailed. They do plastic ones, too. They all involve glue and blueprints. I’ve never put one of those together.
    It rained last night and was rainy and dreary today until after lunch. The sun is out now and it’s lovely.
    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      Jack comes down when he thinks it’s safe. Nala has chased him a few times. I spend time with them in their room. I figure in time Jack will be fine. Gwen never comes down any way.

      That is so neat you gave planes away at Halloween. I would have been glad to stop at your house. My father worked for Hood ice cream, and we gave away Hoodsie’s.

      I didn’t know there was a place near me which made those balsa planes. I bought some planes for my grandnephews and put them in their piñatas. It is too bad they are not as well made as they used to be. I’ve never seen any of the other planes.

      We didn’t get rain until this morning. The sun has been out since the afternoon, but I am chilly.

      • Caryn Says:

        Yes, P. K. Guillow’s. They’re still there. Still making balsa wood gliders and rubber band driven planes as well. My job there was to make the landing gear for the rubber band planes. Four hours a night of putting plastic wheels on bent wires. Very dull. But the wires came wrapped in sheets of the Hartford Courant newspaper so I could read bits of articles and most of the daily comics while I worked. Eventually, I just brought in a paperback book and read it while I worked. The floor manager tried to stop me but I was doing way more than quota so he backed off. 😀

      • katry Says:

        I remember the elastic planes. They usually travelled well. I always thought the landing gear was the stand-out part!! Nothing is worse than being bored at work. I can totally see how putting wheels on bent wires would get tiresome quickly.

  3. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,

    Last night on the TV news the local weatherman showed a cluster of thunderstorms on the radar just south of Wichita Kansas. He said those storms could travel the 300 or so miles south and hit us in the morning. I awoke early around 7:30 to the sound of thunder but we didn’t get any rain at my house from those storms. By ten o’clock the sky was partly sunny and now the temperature is just over 90°. This might be a good day to jump into the pool.

    I remember variety stores such as Woolworth. In New York we called them “Five and Ten cent stores”, when we moved to Texas they were referred to as “Dime stores”. Regardless, they were all the same just as you described. Today, they have all gone out of business.

    The closest kind of stores today are “Dollar General” stores. Due to inflation now everything in one of those stores, including the balsa wood gliders is a dollar. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      It rained yesterday in Boston and took until this morning to reach us. The rain wasn’t heavy at any time, but it was steady until early afternoon. Today never got higher than 68˚. It is even chillier now.

      We also had Grant’s which was quite similar to Woolworths’s except it sold more sundries like cloth and sewing supplies. It was also in the square. We always called it Woolworth’s. I miss both of those stores.

      We have both a Dollar General and a Dollar Store. I shop there for decorations and whatever else I happen to find which I didn’t know I needed.

      • Bob Says:

        I miss variety stores also. We had Grants as well as Woolworth and a local chain whose name I’ve long forgotten. I think Dollar General is the only one where everything in the store is one dollar. The others charge more for some items. I buy my readers there for one dollar per pair and when they break I throw them away.

      • katry Says:

        I have glasses from the eye doctor. I used to kid my mother that her eye doctor worked at CVS. She had two pairs, one for close, the other for far away. I’d cry if my glasses broke.

        I enjoy the Dollar Store.

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