Wednesday, 29 September 2010

On Walking [and almost singing] In The Rain

The train sat at Barbican, stubbornly refusing to move despite the chorus of sighs, tuts and four-letter words emanating from the rain-soaked commuters crammed within. After some time, the driver's voice crept sheepishly from the PA system,
"Due to signalling problems in the Moorgate area, this train will now terminate at the next station." A ripple of frustration and anger spread like wildfire through the carriage. I tried to immerse myself in it, to force myself to dread the 15 minute walk from Moorgate to Fenchurch Street in the rain. But I couldn't. The fact is, and I've mentioned this before, this my kind of weather.

The half-hearted groan I attempted as I stepped off of the train wouldn't have convinced even the least travel-hardened commuter, but I thought I should at least try to fit in. Inside, I relished the prospect of the soggy stroll ahead. My friends in Italy decided my love of rain was an anglosaxon trait, but I really don't think that this is the case. Any of you who are British or have British friends will have probably been subjected to many a lengthy moan about the weather. It's one the nation's favourite conversation topics, I think. And while I can often be heard whining about how effing hot it is, I think I'm definitely in a minority when it comes to my appreciation of the wet stuff.

Despite being traditionally thought of as gloomy and miserable and grey, rain makes me smile. I love seeing the raindrops leap into the air as they rebound of the pavement, and the way it makes the city shine in reflected light. Everything looks nicer in the rain. It amazes me that the ripples in puddles and splashes on the floor seem to be in time with whatever my iPod has chosen to play me. It's like magic. Then there's the patter of rain on the roof, which is one of my favourite noises, especially in cars when it's coupled with the sound of windscreen wipers. I've even started to enjoy the extra care rain forces you take; a leap over an unexpected puddle, for example, or the precision involved in staying upright as you slide like Bambi on ice over a wet station concourse. And then there's the politics involved in wielding an umbrella.

Take this evening for example; the pavement was narrow. A woman with a golf umbrella was coming towards me. Neither of us knew how to act. A collision seemed inevitable. I made a decision just in time; I'd lift my umbrella up, so her ridiculously oversized one could pass underneath. However, I hadn't considered the fact that the woman was a giant and about twice my height so, even with my arm at full length, my reasonably sized umbrella still connected with her's. At least she laughed, and didn't poke me in the eye with it.

Even this awkwardness wasn't enough to ruin my good mood. I felt like skipping through the puddles and twirling my umbrella. If I had a glass handy, I'd raise it, right now, to a few more joyous months of rain [check back in two months to witness me take this back].


  1. I totally agree with you - rain is the best! I've always thought that nice weather is over-rated. It rains all the time where I live, so it's probably good that I like it haha.

  2. I like drizzles, especially at noon. It's just too hot over here so I always appreciate light rain.

    I don't like it when it rains too hard, though. I'm the type of person who's just too lazy to bring an umbrella. I don't know why.

  3. The rain's beautiful. I've always appreciated it when the weather is warm. I'll admit it brings me down in winter, though, but mostly because it's too cold to enjoy.

  4. I bought rain boots last week! I was excited when it rained and I got to wear them.

  5. I love the rain when I'm going home from somewhere as I know there is a bath and a hot chocolate waiting for me. If I'm on my way out it's not as fun.

    Oh, and golf umbrellas piss me off.

  6. You have a fantastic attitude, and I applaude you! My psychology professor spoke to us a lot on rain, because it rained a lot where I used to live too. He said it was the no. 1 reason people in my country were depressed, and he thought this so silly, because you can't DO anything about it! So you should embrace the weather, and look at it another way. Clearly, you've mastered that, so good on you:) I'll have to see when the rain hits Wales, how I feel about it:) I suppose I should buy some wellies?

  7. Yeahhhhhh, the rain! Would you like it if I sent you an mp3 of a song I wrote about the rain? You can say no, but if you say yes I shall need your email address.
    Also, no one tuts here in the States. No one. I've only heard it in books. Does tut indicate a sound or is it as I have read, "tut tut" a phrase?
    Great post, btw. I always liked taking walks in the rain, but it can make me feel a bit sad in the moring. I think I prefer an afternoon storm.

  8. We had a running joke (and I still find it hilarious even though it's bloody awful) that went, "If Barbican, YOU CAN YOU!"

    I know. We were thirteen OK, SHUT UP.

    I don't mind the rain in certain places. It makes me smile and I skip and I think jumping into puddles to splash other people is one of my cutest, most endearing traits. But rain in India or the Philippines? Yeah.. no. I can deal with it, but I certainly don't enjoy it.

    Go you for making it all singing in the rain and yellow raincoats and adorable leading men. Which of course you are: an adorable leading man. <3

    Now this had goddamn better post or I will be beyond FURIOUS.

  9. For someone who doesn't like rain all that much, you sure make it sound amazing!
    I really only like the rain when it's absolutely pouring (which you don't really get in the UK). Where you walk out the door and it's like someones thrown a bucket of water in your face. Those days are the best.

  10. UMBRELLA FIGHTS! LOVE! haha.I never associated rain with grey and depressing.For me it's always rejuvenating and if possible a day off with s steming cup of coffee and a good book,occasionally looking up to see the rain fall in pretty crystal sheets.
    Jumping into puddles aren't half bad either :D

  11. There's always some magic in the rain. I love it when it rains on my offs while i took my afternoon naps or just enjoying a cup of coffee.

    @Rish...i totally understand why you don't enjoy rains over here, i do too most of the times. I just love the rain when i'm at home.


    @ Lauren - I know how you feel. Sometimes I feel like I live in the world capital of drizzle so, as you say, it's lucky I'm a fan.

    @ Gnetch - no no no, the heavier the rain the better. But, as Risha points out, my rain is probably nothing compared to yours ;)You have like, real rain.

    @ ZJ - we never really get warm rain here, it's almost always cold. The first time I ever felt warm rain was in Spain when I was about 10, it was one of the strangest moments of my life.

    @ Allison - I hope they withstood their first test of rain well! I'm counting down the days until pay day, when I'm getting a new scarf and a pair of fingerless gloves. Happy days.

    @ London Girl - I know. I feel the clue to where they should be used is in the name. People that use them in busy streets and stations at rush hour should be punished, in my opinion.

    @ Alexandra - I think you should definitely invest in some! I'm also confused when people say the rain depresses them, as you say you can't do anything about it, so you may as well sing in it. I hope you're settling in well in Wales!

    @Traveler@Large - SEND IT! SEND IT NOW. I'll DM you my email address. I had to ask around regarding your tutting question. People do tut, often. It's a clicking sound you make with your tongue on the back of your teeth/roof of your mouth when you're annoyed, is how I would describe it. You can also say 'tut tut', but that's more a joke and less an instinctive reaction.

    @ Risha - I'm pleased your ever so flattering comment posted successfully. I was worried for your health. Like I said to Gnetch, I imagine my rain is a walk in the park compared to the Philippines or India. I bet you get real rain there, that would wash my off my wellingtonned feet!

    @ Kisekae - I think a trip to Canada is in order, so that I can experience the bucket-of-water-in-face-rain. I think I'd like it.

    @ Sweta - a possible day off? Haha, we'd never be at work if that happened here. I'm going to start campaigning for it. And jumping into puddles is something I must do more often.

    @ Mish - The rain when your indoors is fanstastic, it makes you feel so warm and cosy. And having a warm cup of coffee at the same time; perfection! :)

  13. Oh my word, I just pressed post comment for the above and the connection timed out. I nearly cried.