Some Thoughts on Rain

Rain makes me appreciate the sunny days more. I find that when summer finally rolls around with a streak of sunny days in the high 90°s, I enjoy it(at least at the beginning). That warm temperature feeling is welcome because it isn’t going to last. It allows us to have float parties at Greenlake, go hiking more often, and see a long reaching view from a vantage point. Having something you enjoy disappear for a bit can allow you to appreciate other things. Not that I’m glad the rain I love is gone, but it being gone has given me a new space or time I wouldn’t otherwise have.

Rain forces me to slow down. This is true in both a literal and figurative sense. Traveling while in the rain I find myself moving slower, the wet ground can be slippery so extra care needs to be taken. I’m not sure if the idea of going outside is less attractive in the rain or that staying inside snuggling up with a blanket is more so, but I usually always find myself curled up in my reading nook. Rainstorms in Seattle also tend to come with a decent amount of power outages, I guess it’s all the trees falling on power lines. And yea, a power outage can blow when you just want to binge watch Stranger Things, but with the power gone it also gives way to lying in bed way longer then necessary, day dreaming those deep thoughts alone or with a friend, or finally picking up that theology book to read. When I am forced to slow down I am reminded of the things I usually leave behind when I’m too busy hopping from one thing to the next.

Rain cleans. Not too long ago Seattle had a really bad smoke problem. All this smoke from forest fires was being blown into our air space and it got so bad you could honestly stare at the sun and not hurt your eyes. It hurt to breathe and waking up in the morning your throat felt dry. After a week or two of this terrible air quality, the smoke was cleansed from our sky by a little bit of rain. That was all it took to become clear again! I don’t think I had been that happy for rain to arrive in a long time. It’s honestly an incredible gift whenever it falls from the heavens and rinses the world around us. The air smells different, plants become greener, and everything feels fresh.

Living in Seattle now for close to five years(whoa!) rain has become a more common part of my life. Seattle doesn’t get the most rain in the country but it is up there for most rainy days. Growing up in Southern California I wasn’t a stranger to rain. El Niño* brought plenty of to my elementary school, typically getting recess cancelled because the playground would flood. But when the rain stopped I knew it would be many months before it returned. I always looked forward to those spring days when the clouds would open up, the trees and bushes would ripple underneath the watery cascade, and the soft taps on the roof and windows would lull me to sleep.

 

*I just found out El Niño actually makes the Northwest more hot and dry while the Southwest gets all that rain, weather is neat!