Dear Diary, I love April! | Eastern North Carolina Now

It rained the whole way to Elizabeth City, on Friday. By the time, I arrived the rain had "set in".

    Publisher's note: Please join me in welcoming Author Michele Rhem, who presents us with her poignant memoirs of the Rabbit Patch, where her diaries weave tales of a simpler, expressive life lost to many, but gathered together in her most familiar environs - the Rabbit Patch.

On the Way to Elizabeth City

    It rained the whole way to Elizabeth City, on Friday. By the time, I arrived the rain had "set in". Showers came in intervals all afternoon. Once, a heavy shower fell and made quite a racket. Lyla and I were looking out the window when. abruptly, the rain stopped and the sun came out. Quickly, I rushed to the porch with her, looking for a rainbow-and there it was!-a very faint arch of color over the laughing river. It did not compare in brilliance with the one I had seen a week ago, at the rabbit patch, but it was Lylas' first rainbow, and that will make it memorable for me. Lyla stared in awe and said "wow" in a hushed voice.

    After a nice evening dinner, I went out to see the twilight. The rain had been stopped for hours, but the distant sky was full of flashing. The air cooled off considerably. At last, we heard thunder foretelling of an impending storm. Will, Lylas' dad, took her to the front porch. There was wind, which delighted Lyla-and the sky was flashing lightening in all sorts of arrangements. Lyla was delighted. Moments later, we heard the familiar sound of hail . It only hailed a few moments, thankfully. When we went in, I wondered what Lyla thought about the sky, with its' rainbow and flashing lights- and then the hail.

    On Saturday

    Saturday dawned bright and fair and seemed to call my name. It was going to be a good day for wandering. I saw a robin in the yard when I went out. He had a mouth full of nesting materials and so I wished him well. The dogwood, just outside of Jennys' kitchen window is in full bloom. It is supposed to wait for Easter, but shows no sign of regret about that. It is full of "April snow" and just lovely.

    After breakfast, I did take to wandering. I took my sweet, little companion, Lyla with me. The streets are lined with all varieties of flowering trees. I especially love the weeping cherry trees with their flowery tendrils. Friendly people were out in many yards tending the soil in various fashions. We saw some young children chasing bubbles in the gentle breeze. Spring is a fine time for such things. Chimes tinkled from porches and seemed the perfect music when teamed with the songbirds, for the first day of April. It sounded like an "out-of season" rendition of Joy to the World.

    In the, afternoon, after Lylas' nap, Jenny and I took Lyla out again. The sky was as bright as October with only a few friendly clouds and so we watched them a while. We walked to a park with swings and slides-and seagulls. We had a good time beneath the sky with friendly clouds and supper was late because of that.


    Breakfast was served and cleared away. Fresh strawberries were cut and sugared for a strawberry short cake- and a pound cake was baking-all by ten am. The day was every bit as lovely as the day before it. April has made a grand entry this year, I thought.

    Sunday dinner was served at twelve-thirty. Wills' mom, Miss Claudia came and so we ate in good company. Lyla was especially happy about the cake. She has only recently tasted cake and has decided there should always be a cake in the kitchen. She has put forth great effort to say "cake" and does so perfectly, with emphasis on the 'k" sound.

    Monday Morning

    Early Monday morning, I saw some young "lady cardinals" fussing in the oak trees. Meanwhile, a robin was having breakfast, where Will had removed a small and dead peach tree. I don't remember ever seeing robins quarrel. Squirrels were racing about and seemed very preoccupied with squirrel business.

    There is a ladybanks rose in full bloom, in the neighbors' yard that ought to be in a magazine. It runs up the side of a shed and then grows upright several feet. Plumes of yellow blossoms cascade like a floral fountain, making a spectacular "splash".

    An hour later, as I carried my bags to the car, I thought what a lovely occasion, the weekend had been. I went past, the stroller and noticed yesterdays' gathered flowers strewn in the seat-like souvenirs . . . Dear Diary, I love April!
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