Do you pledge to fight 'blue sky thinking'?
September 5, 2008 5:21pm CST
August was a washout, September looks like getting half its rainfall in the first week! - Yes, I am talking about Britain here! There have been days this summer that caught us unawares and were warm enough for shirtsleeves. Days when the topic of conversation among strangers was 'how warm it is' (with surprise and pleasure). Oh, I am not really grumbling. I enjoy the rain, actually, especially good hard, lashing rain such as we have had tonight. Here in the dry East of England, that sort of rain is not as common as it is in the West. I have even been known to enjoy holidays in Cornwall and Wales when it seemed that the rain was set for a week. Sailing a small boat in the rain has a charm all its own ... the feeling that you can't get any wetter than you are already makes capsizing less of a disaster and baling does keep you warm. There is also the thankful knowledge that a bright driftwood fire will be burning in the grate and hot soup and wine are on the menu when you have dragged the boat up the shingle to its resting place by the wall. In between the showers, there is sunshine painting the clouds a dazzling white and bedecking every wet blade of grass and flower and iron railing with diamonds fit for a queen's tiara. Now, the clouds ... they are a sight to behold! I am thinking of joining the Cloud Appreciation Society whose manifesto states: "We pledge to fight ‘blue-sky thinking’ wherever we find it. Life would be dull if we had to look up at cloudless monotony day after day." Here in England, when we see a sky without a cloud, we become suspicious and wary and even shifty! Without clouds (in the daytime, at least) it is almost as if someone has taken the lid off our box and we have no way of judging the height of the ceiling. The Manifesto of the Cloud Appreciation Society says that clouds "are Nature’s poetry, and the most egalitarian of her displays, since everyone can have a fantastic view of them ... They are for dreamers and their contemplation benefits the soul. Indeed, all who consider the shapes they see in them will save on psychoanalysis bills." Do you love clouds (and rain)? Do you pledge to fight 'blue sky thinking' ... even if you are a member of the Woodcraft Folk, whose common greeting is "Blue skies!"? What do clouds mean to you? Have you looked at them from 'both sides, now, from up and down and still, somehow ...' you 'really don't know clouds at all'? (Cloud Appreciation Society Manifesto: http://www.cloudappreciationsociety.org/manifesto/ )
5 Sep 08
I admire your sinewy prose style. Well, it is almost raining everyday here. But I still like the raining day though it is ordinary. When the sun emerges from behind the clouds, I will be a wonderfulday. People seem to be tired of the weather here. In my opinion, however, even the sunset is different everyday!
6 Sep 08
I love clouds. Ever since I can remember I have loved watching the clouds and seeing the pictures in them. My dad encouraged me to find the oictures in the clouds, I encouraged the girls and now the grandchildren. I always look for a cloud if the sky seems all blue and usually find at least one fluffy lamb like one. I have seen castles and witches and animals in the clouds and have to agree with the Cloud Appreciation Society.
• United States
6 Sep 08
You would have no problem recruiting members for your "Cloud Appreciation Society" here in south central Texas, at least not this year. It seems that it is always feast or famine when it comes to rainfall. The beginning of last year was unusually wet. It was hard for me to believe that my fellow Texans were complaining about the rain. Well, they got their wish. In the fall the skies dried up, and we got no rain to speak of until just recently. The spring flowers were sparse to nonexistent this year. There were plenty of sunflowers this summer, but even those were stunted. Yes, please sign me up as a member in your "Cloud Appreciation Society".
• United Kingdom
6 Sep 08
I love clouds. Fluffy white summer clouds that pretend they're not about to explode on you. Big dark black clouds that make it obvious that we'll have rain but leave you wondering when it will happen. I look up at clouds with my children and we say what they look like. Blue skies are ok for a novelty but I wouldn't want them too often. Living in Middle England, our weather is extremely varied. It is often necessary to check four or five different weather forecasts from different places to know what kind of mix we'll get. It's nice to have such interesting weather but it's a bit of a pain when you think everywhere is not too cold and not too wet but then you get soaked all of a sudden. I think I have gone off on a tangerine. You asked about clouds, didn't you? Well, I won't join the cloud appreciation society but there must be hundreds of occasions when I've wished I had a camera to take cloud pictures. They are very pretty and interesting.