The Rains


The skies are gray. The trees and leaves are clean and ridden of their dusty summer trails whatsoever.

The first anticipation of the rain is our annual invitation to visiting treasure troves of memories collected over years of getting wet in the first rain, dancing on the the terrace with other kids, being towel dried by mom and warned about the perils of getting wet in rain to the beautiful walks in the rain with buddies in our teen years to walking and crying in the rain after your first breakup to leisurely walks in the rain holding hands with the one you love to watching our new born being terrified of the claps of thunder to leading them into their first rains!

I have yet to come across someone who has not floated paper boats in muddy puddles or jumped strategically through puddles enjoying the brown splatter on white uniforms.

If childhood is so strongly linked with the onset and splash of rain, what changes when we grow up?

After the initial euphoria surrounding the first pitter-patter of raindrops, hot spicy bhajiyas, roadside bhuttas and reveling in cutting chais, most Mumbaikars are back to blaming everything from God to BMC and everything in between. The rains are blamed for the high humidity, the trains / buses running late, traffic jams on the road, potholes – and if life has been uncannily kind to you so far, you blame the rains as the lesser privileged have lesser dry space to sleep in.

While I do not trivialize these issues and understand that it is important for the parent with young kid to return home on time and roads being free of car breakers aka potholes and one’s need to be comfortable; what I am really hinting at is our attitude towards rain.

There is definitely still ecstasy and aura around it. I have seen people steal glances at the windows with a clear anticipatory question in the eyes… Is it raining outside? I have seen craned necks catching a purgatory glance at the heavy showers outside with a glint in the eye that dies when the eyes return to the computer monitor.

Then why not embrace and enjoy it wholeheartedly? If this is what growing old is all about then I am glad I choose not to grow up. Which makes me think some more.

I have seen the most sane people go totally philosophical just by spending a few minutes by the sea or ocean or any water body? Just as if by sitting upon its shore and pondering it sucks you in and with its gentle warm currents washes the pains and tribulations of everyday life and fills you with a deep sense of fulfilment and understanding instead. No wonder you see people, spending some time by a Marine drive, gazing as the sun goes down and city lights go up and just walk off with an inner sense of zen the coolly reflects on their face.

And yet again, the same does not seem to transcend too far beyond the first few showers. Maybe then it is about growing up from loving the first drops of rain to falling in love with the deep and infinite ocean. Or maybe its something more.

I hold my steaming cuppa by the window with the rain splattering my face and wonder on, “What is it really about the rains?”

One Response to The Rains

  1. I always thought we are loosing the charm of a lot of things as a generation. you just stamped it to be correct.

    today if at all we want it to rain, is when it is too hot. we want to get out of heat, but not necessarily get into the monsoon. All that comes to mind is clogged roads and traffic jam. miss the days of opulence, when we were peniless yet rich enough to float our paper steamers in the puddle.

    Art of living is getting to be the most endangered of all.

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