It is the day after Hurricane Irene hammered the East Coast and I am in the car slaloming around fallen trees and downed power lines. Making many detours round blocked roads it takes me and the boys an extra 20 minutes to get to North Salem causing a little extra strain on their bladders. They were on three legs for some time before we could start our walk.

Rivulets of water were spraying off my boots as I walked through the grass. The ground was more than soggy underfoot, unable to soak up the rain large puddles had formed everywhere and the boys were getting extra muddy. I spied several ponds and streams where they shouldn’t be and the spill from the lake was roaring like a miniature Niagara Falls.

There were many big trees down in the fields, some torn up from their roots others snapped in half and a lot with missing limbs. The power of Irene had caused major destruction all around but then I was surprised to come across a spider’s web still standing, looking almost undamaged by the winds. A flimsy construction that can be whisked away with the wag of a dog’s tail was still there after the storm. Nature is truly unpredictable, mighty oaks can be toppled and humble spider’s webs left standing, one day 80mph winds and the next, beautiful clear blue skies.

And of course we were without power for the next five days.