The kittens, by now cats, could not believe that it rained solidly all yesterday evening, and kept rushing out of the cat door and coming in again, damp and indignant. They like to go out around dusk, and they especially like to go out and frolic in the garden after they have had their supper. Instead they had to make do with frolicking in the study while we were trying to watch an improving documentary about the history of weather forecasting, tobogganing across the nice slidey wooden floor on the broken cardboard box that is their current favourite bed, until they ripped the lid off.
It was rather piquant to get a summer storm, since last night's episode covered the efforts to forecast the weather ahead of D-Day, which was postponed at short notice for twenty-four hours after the Met Office warned of a storm coming in from the Atlantic. Their model of cold fronts, then quite newly developed, had something to do with it, but so did the actual readings submitted every hour from a weather station in the far west of Ireland. What hits Blacksod tonight will hit the English Channel tomorrow afternoon. Today, 6 June, is the anniversary of the landings, and looking at the trees thrashing about outside I could see why you would not have attempted beach landings in such weather.
The artists formerly known as kittens were even less impressed when it continued to rain all through the morning and we got a lot more of the going out, coming straight back in routine, until one by one they gave up and went to sleep. Asleep is how Mr Fluffy spends most of his morning anyway, but he likes to go out and run around for half an hour first. Or perhaps he likes the idea that he could go out if he wanted to. The Systems Administrator had set the day aside for vacuuming since it was forecast to be wet, and the cats did not like the vacuum cleaner either. Mr Fidget and Mr Fluffy eyed it warily, but Mr Cool hid behind the sofa before going and taking refuge in the conservatory.
I don't think too much has broken. I stood the chairs from outside the conservatory down on the lawn so that they could not be blown through the windows, and put the umbrella inside the conservatory in case it should snap, and then remembered to take the auricula pots off the top shelf of their pew-theatre, just in case, and I shut the greenhouse and windward conservatory doors. The gale has made a mess, though. The sage bush in the herb bed and the Phlomis italica in the turning circle have been rather bashed about. Both are lax and not terribly solid shrubs, sending up long flowering spikes that will subsequently be cut off quite far down as the new growth will come from inside the bush, and their flowering stems are now pointing in every direction and chunks of the sage have sagged so that the bush is open in the middle. I fear that now they have flopped they may remain that way until pruning time and next year's new growth restore order.