The Damp

Although the flood waters have receded the ground is so wet that every morning the dew is heavy and the sun rises into misty wet air. The humidity is saturating.

We have not had a full hot drying sunny day in weeks. The clouds and heavy humid stillness hang in the air. Hangs with the air. It is the air. Malodorous. The air is thick and smells brown.

The tomatoes are not ripening and the few that have are tasteless. Too much water. Not enough sun. The early sweet corn is the same. Though my courgette crop from the porch garden keeps on coming!

And it is great for the new trees.

The humidity is literally turning surfaces in the house green with mildew. My coats: leather and oilskin, all have mildew spots. The doors and shelves. I am oiling them all again this weekend. Air thick with humidity.

I say this only because I feel anxious to make a plan to cope with these changes. Increased use of water and electricity cannot be solutions. High tech solar will not work without ample sun. Even our wind is quiet. We need to create ways to cope using our own strong bodies and minds. ( I still like the idea of an exercise bicycle that creates instant power. I would invest in that technology. All it needs is an iPad and I know many retired husbands who could peddle while they surf the internet instead of laying on the couch with the IPad. We need one that will run a dehumidifier though – so far the bikes don’t power very much). Or do they? Do they have plug ins? I need to research the latest.

I always thought a gym could supply power for itself. And as the last person gets off the last bicycle it slows to a stop, the lights dim and flicker as we pan in on the slowly slowing peddle. Peddle goes still. Lights off. Sound of door slamming. Silence.

Can you see the two mini flocks? If I could capture all three chick flocks in one image that would be a treat.

Mr Flowers is super friendly with me now Pania is gone. He follows me everywhere as I do evening chores.

Anyway. Today is dawning humid and hot again. I will be baking though. I have avoided it for weeks and I need to test bake more flours today.

The starter is fed. I lost one starter, that was stored in the fridge, to mold which has not happened before. Luckily I always keep two. Even the fridge is humid.

Take care!

miss c

PS … you will have noticed that carefree naïve ‘celi’ has gone. As one of my oldest friends from our beach days said – (We grew up in my Dads boat building workshop, fishing off the piers and dropping everything EVERYTHING to go surfing.) He said “ c, we are not bullet proof anymore”. The virus is creeping back – California cases are in the news, New Zealand is still closed, Canada is still closed, Melbourne is back on lock down. This time we will make sure to lock ourselves down with a little more luxury and a little more planning and a little less frantic anxiety. And I am back to ‘don’t mess with me’ miss c.

42 Comments on “The Damp

  1. We had a mini heatwave in London, which became unpleasantly humid, but now the rain’s back. For the moment it’s a relief.
    I bet the ducks are happy!

  2. we’ve had very unseasonable weather all season, excessive heat, heavy rains, high winds, hail, moisture permeates everything, love your first picture – the pastels

  3. One of my enduring memories of Iowa/Minnesota summers of my childhood is the drippy humidity. There were days even we children were reluctant to move — and that was 70 years ago!

  4. We are dry, dry, dry here in the Pacific Northwest and have the fires to prove it. Temps have moderated since our high of 116 but we are not getting any rain. I think you must have gotten it. Fascinating post, what amazing effects this crazy weather has on us.

    • It is interesting ( though the North America is huge but it feels like some areas like ours are getting cooler and wetter ( this is according to the old farmers) but others are getting hotter and drier. But when we’re we ever able to depend on the weather anyway. But the climate is another more worrying story.

  5. I am waiting to mow til 1pm and the field in full sunshine is still wet. I’m in southern Indiana and we haven’t had rain in over a week but I have to mow 3 times a week because of the amount of dew that is making the grass grow.

    What happened to Pania? 😦

    • Pania was taken by a hawk – and her little chick died as a result. I imagine Pania fought the hawk – though it was a huge bird so it may even have been an eagle.

      • Ohhhh no, I’m sorry to hear that, hawks and other predator birds are so hard to protect from. Because of her size I would think it must’ve been an eagle. My goose ‘s size keeps the hawks away and she is about the size of a peahen.

        • All these other chickens and chicks and she chose to take Pania. Pania had been keeping to the outskirts though – keeping her chicks away from the hoi poloi which worked against her in the end.

  6. Humidity is the worst but we could use it up here. Our state and the neighbors are on fire. Rampant, uncontrolled fire. And yes, I feel it’s time to put the masks back on, even being vaccinated. There is too much unease, too much unknown still.

  7. I was thinking of prepping for the fall as well and will be using my mask in the grocery store. It’s hard to believe it’s coming back (but then again, before the rising numbers here, I was watching the southern hemisphere). In Virginia, we’re having these long cold springs–unpredictable warm days, then back to cold. I used to plant peas and lettuces and carrots late Feb, early March and harvest before the summer garden needed to be planted. Now I’m rearranging and planting those things in late August. And the winter garden–turnips, cole crops–has gone by the wayside. For all I know, it will change again. Summers are just a little cooler, it seems to me as well, but then there are the sudden days of killing heat…And a couple weeks ago, we had some cool, low to mid 80s days that were so humid, any work left me drenched. The thing is, I’m not sure anymore that there will be established patterns again.

    • Yes – you may be right. Terms like climate change and global warming make us think of an unstoppable increase whereas it feels like we are being hit with extremes. I think it is best to use our good judgement – look after our own air and water and land – do the best we can according to our conscience.

  8. Nothing wrong with a “don’t mess with me” kind of attitude. 🙂

    Looking at your pictures of all the water and humidity or the floods over in Europe and then looking out my own window at the crunchy brown grass here in Wisconsin or the news coverage of the horrible fires out west, I often think that it would so amazing if we had some way to spread some of that water out. I’m sure that that sort of system would create its own sets of problems, but it is so sad to watch one area being destroyed for lack of something that is had in such abundance somewhere else that it is destroying that place.

  9. we could use some of your water- and we would send you our hot dry sunny days…..Mother Nature is the boss obviously!

  10. I wonder what the point of having a dehumidifier would be in those conditions … sure you might shift a bit of moisture from A to B, but then it will come straight back again !!
    As for the mould on your clothes, have you thought of bagging them up in airtight vacuum storage bags, it would stop moisture getting in.

  11. “It’s not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” Charles Darwin

  12. Having mold everywhere has to be so frustrating, so hard to bear. And oh, Mr. Flowers! It is so touching that Mr. Flowers is staying close to you. Sad.
    We have had no rain for quite a while now, but hoping for a storm tonight. My tomatoes are green, green, green. Not enough sun, as you said. Overcast.

    • After saying that John found a few red ones in one of his overgrown vegetable gardens. He does not like to weed. So today I will make some bread for bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches.

  13. Living in the tropics, I’m familiar with your mould/mildew problems…. Luckily, it’s winter for us just now, and consequently a bit drier, but summer can be horrible. I treat mildewed or mouldy surfaces with a solution of 6% acidity white vinegar and tea tree oil, I wipe down leather shoes with diluted tea tree oil, and have had some success in keeping linen cupboards, etc, mould-free with a UV light on a timer. We do of course have air conditioning and a big solar system (20Kw), so I’d hate to try and deal with the problem without it! Here’s hoping for a nice windy week for you, to blow it all away.

  14. Dreaded damp. We had a terrible rainy period during autumn following a wet summer and our house came alive with mould like never before. It took us months of constant effort to pull contents out of cupboards,and clean in, under and around everything -sometimes several times- with a homemade mix of water, metho, eucalyptus and clove oil in a spray bottle. This despite ceiling fans inside and on the outdoor patio area turning constantly from October onwards. The G.O. washed all the exterior walls and constructed more drainage to move groundwater away from the house. We’ve bought new and additonal ceiling fans (six in total) and we had a 3.5 kw solar system fitted just as the autumn rains started. We’ve had the woodfire going all winter so the house has dried out nicely now. But who knows what the coming season will bring. There has been horrendous flooding overseas…

    • Sounds awful. Working such long days I have not a hope of clearing out every cupboard but I found a little window air conditioner and put that in my bedroom window and have brought my clothes in there.

  15. I have returned from the midwest where the humid miasma felt almost unbearable. no fun, all this moisture.

  16. Methinks your ‘don’t mess with me’ feeling is part of many of us by now ! Had read of Dale’s house-wide problems and surely can empathize with yours ! Our freezing and blustery winter precludes such, but . . . we in NSW are in last year’s Melbourne-style ever-tightening lockdowns now, supposedly until end of October, and those who have no understanding are beginning to protest country-wide with little comprehension how much worse they are making the situation. As far as the number affected or dead we are still the ‘Lucky Country’ but personally I am glad at the moment to live away from the madding throng . . . Take care and the best with getting rid of the wretched damp . . .

    • I think I have to learn to live with the damp as long as I am here. I do agree about the safely in moving rurally. Although very few people out here believe the virus is even real – at least there are fewer people.

  17. I can imagine how awful the humidity is, you can almost drink the air. I don’t have air conditioning and had some issues with mold on leather. I found a product called Damp Rid. It comes in small bag type things or in little buckets (like a 5 qt ice cream bucket), I’ve put a bucket in just about every closet and it seems to be working. You just have to remember to check them periodically for when they need replacing.

      • Not entirely sure but there are granules in it and apparently they suck the moisture out of the air and when the bag or bucket fill up you dump it out and put a new one in. This year I see they have refillable ones so you don’t have to buy the entire bucket.

      • Well shoot, I don’t know where my reply went. Anyway, I’m not sure what they’re made of but there are granules in it that apparently suck the moisture out of the air and when the bucket or bag is full you dump it and put a new one in. This year I was able to get a big bottle of just the granules so I didn’t have to buy the whole bucket.

  18. we have been cooler than average [90s instead of 100+] and sticky humid. watch out for Covid 30, that’s the weight you gain in quarantine. =)

    • We are the same – sticky humid and cooler. And all this summer when it rains – it is a gusher / we got another two inches in one shower last night. Extraordinary!

  19. Some of the heavy brown flavor of the air could come from the western fires’ smoke, as it’s drifting across the continent (and there are regional wildfires as well). If you zoom out on this map, you can see how smoke covers the US:

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