★★ The rainy morning was as congenial as it could be — dimness but not darkness, a steady but not soaking rain. Circles spread across the puddles; droplets beaded on the bright green leaves. A low-hanging branch swept back the two-year-old’s hood as he took his shoulder-ride, and he didn’t mind. The battered everyday sneakers got a little damp and no damper; cotton flannel felt close and excessive, the way wool had felt a few weeks before. The late day, after the rain, was as unexpectedly grim and raw as the earlier, wetter part had been unexpectedly bearable.