I am certainly a believer in climate change. Over the years, I have seen many differences from when I was a primary school kid, regularly smashing ice in puddles on the way to school during winter. These days, it is rare to see ice in puddles in the place I grew up.
Seasons seem to be less reliable, and there are more extreme events – be it wind, rain, long dry periods etc. Anyway, this year, for the first time in my experience, and for the first time since historians have been documenting, the creek that runs in front of our place completely dried up for several months.
In 2006, it got very low with only a couple of water holes holding water. This year it was completely dry. Certainly there was no chance to pump water for the garden and walking the creek bed a few weeks ago, I was dismayed to find a dead kangaroo, possum and several birds – and I couldn’t help but wonder if the all the water ways and dams had dried up in our area. It was very scary and heart sickening. Iron Creek drying up completely made the local news. However, that changed last weekend and within a few hours of heavy rain, we had a swollen creek. I’ve seen it in bigger flood than this, but it is still surprising that so much water gathered so quickly!
From last Saturday – until today, Tuesday, an easterly weather pattern has set in where we have continual misty rain for at least 4 days. It is not particularly cold – just wet, misty and miserable. I’ve nearly forgotten how much I was hanging out for rain – because now, I’m over it. (Some people are just hard to please…) However, I am glad that there is water back in the creek and that it is flowing.
We only get this easterly rain a couple of times a year, but it makes it difficult with and for the dogs. Leaving them out in it means that they play and chase each other until they are covered in black heavy clay that sticks to their coats and they are wringing wet. I then feel rebellious about putting them into clean kennels (they are definitely not coming into the house in mud packs) and nice clean bedding. I have been known to rinse and dry off 10-15 dogs before putting them to bed for the night – but believe me that is a back breaking, long job and I never feel like the dogs are really clean because I am trying to get so many comfortable for the night. So, in this type of weather, a morning and afternoon walk, through well grassed paddocks (avoiding as much mud as possible), is all they get. I try to make it up to them with extra grooming time or with big treats, such as marrow bones or pigs ears, but by the time 4 days have passed, I know they are feeling very cabin/kennel bound and I begin to feel very sorry for them, and very cross with the weather.