Here's a picture of that elegant young gentleman Basil.
It was taken in early January which is why the grass is still green. In an effort to preserve the life of the lawn over summer I did all of the following: bucketed water from the washing machine, when it could be spared from other parts of the garden; covered it in old sheets and doona covers when 35 degree days were predicted; and, finally, mulched it with pea straw. Consequently, there are still a few minute green spots remaining here and there amid the brown. The beautiful and strange rain that has been falling over the past few days might bring the grass back to life. I hope so since I don't want to get married standing on a claypan covered in a load of shrivelled hard dead leaves (cue confused Bridezilla-like roaring and sounds of smashing glass). But even less do I want to get married in my back yard with a hundred friends and relatives standing about getting rained upon. So in summary I would like it to rain a lot over the next three weeks and then stop. Are you listening, Ceiling Cat?
Back to Basil report, though: while he looks really charming and cuddly and sweet in that photo, Basil is actually growing increasingly snappish and cranky with age. Sometimes, in the evenings, when he comes and sits on the couch with D & me, he falls into such an ecstasy of blissed-out happiness that you can hear the purring from the other end of the house. But most of the time, cheerfulness gives way very easily to irritation, which is expressed by biting and/or fisticuffs. It's what lies ahead for us all I suppose.