I have a postcard on my desk sent from my lovely friend, Vick, and it goes like this (on the picture side, not the side she wrote on) ‘Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain, Effing Snow & Rain’. No snow here… but man I’ve looked at that postcard a few times in the last few months and wondered if it’s jinxing things.
As I type this blog I can hear the rain pouring outside and the wind blowing the trees around as if they were made of cotton. It’s rained non-stop all yesterday and most of the day before. Last weekend we waited until the very last minute to decide if we were going to risk camping due to it raining most of the week. In the more rural areas outside of Sydney there is flooding and people are being evacuated from their homes. Apparently, for the 29 days in February – 24 are going to be rainy. What a wash out.
And so what? You might think. But this has been the wettest and coolest summer Sydney has had in years. And the rain is beginning to get a little bit annoying. Understatement.
Firstly – I didn’t move here for rain and 20 degree summers. I can get that in the UK thank you very much. Secondly, even if I didn’t feel cheated out of my Sydney summer, I am left feeling narked that I don’t get do to spend time the way I want – I came to Sydders in large part for the outdoors lifestyle – the beautiful setting and the beach days. Australia as a whole is a great place to spend your days outdoors – in the bush, on the beach, on the water, whatever takes your fancy. But if rain is bleeding out of the skies as though the sun slit an artery (and it might as well have done – it was so dark yesterday morning I thought it was the middle of the night – and this is summertime!!) then you’re hard pushed to sunbathe, run around in the park with a ball, or go on a coastal walk. If I wanted to freeze, get soaked to the bone and get outdoors I’d have moved to Wales or the Isle of Man. And I love both those places too…
But still you get my drift… my drift as I float away in the rain caused by floods of biblical proportions…
And yes, speaking of floods, I should stop being a whinging pom and be grateful I am not being flooded out of my home. I should be grateful I’m not battling bush fires due to extreme dry weather. I should be be thankful I am not digging to find water in an epic drought.
And I am.
But this is my venting place and vent I will. Whilst tsking about my ruined hair do (rain frizz turning even GHD and dehumidified hair to a big old affro) and another pair of shoes that are not water resilient, whilst on the bus home I got to thinking about all the reasons I hate copious amounts of rain.
Well – I touched on one of them just now… I don’t like the clothes I have to wear when it rain – I don’t like to risk my nice heels as they just get ruined, and if I wear flats I end up porting water around as if I were using my feet as make-shift pails. And then, there is thongs//flipflops – I hate having soggy, mucky feet – rain and thongs don’t lend themselves to each other in the avoidance of that fate. And don’t even get me started on frizzy hair, diluted make-up and trying to juggle my laptop bag, handbag and an umbrella whilst walking in heels (a cheap black pair – the only rain friendly ones).
Secondly, it makes you miserable. It doesn’t give you energy – it defeats you. As you battle the blowing inside out umbrella whilst avoiding the puddles and trying to not make yourself look quite so ‘drowned rat with a side of windswept’ on the way to a meeting you’re hardly thinking – gosh, after I’ve got through this day I just cannot wait to get my butt to the gym, then go home and cook dinner and then…. etc. it makes you want to walk in the door and drop down on the couch and never move except for to make your way to bed. I sit in the office all day instead of taking a few minutes or, god forbid, my lunch hour out of the office.
Third of all, our mail box leaks – all our post is as soaked as sponge in a full bathtub… and a whole lot less useful. It will require drying for 24 hours minimum before opening (or it just tears, falls apart, or gets smudged), that or you get the hairdryer out and give your leccy bill a nice blow dry.
And then there’s the steaming up of cars. The mad dashes between the car and the shop or the house. The bringing on of sinusitis. The losing of umbrellas and then stepping out in the rain and suddenly realising you no longer have anything in your possession that will keep you dry, then buying another cheap, crappy umbrella from the two dollar shop as you can no longer justify buying one from John Lewis/David Jones because you have lost so many. Not to mention the disappointment of calling off of any outdoor plans/sports events. The general dampening of spirits, plans and shoes. The cat coming in the catflap and treading mucky pawprints all the house. And the hazards of puddles (Dr Foster knows all about this one).
All this negativity was running round and round my head and making me more grouchy and more depressed. So, in the end I had a quiet word with myself… well, actually a silent word as I was on the bus and it’s best not to increase the number of deranged people on buses or we’d be overrun… anyway, I decided this blog would also be about trying to remember all the good things about rain – beside the obvious – which is, of course, that we need it!
So, rain – here is my ode to you. You save me remembering to water my poor neglected plants. Your presence means I can wear my pretty gumboots/wellies to my heart’s content! You encourage shops to create a sale on all their summery items. Rain, thanks to you, I can cosy up in the evening and drink horlicks in my trackpants without feeling in the slightest bit guilty. You make the scenery greener. And if anyone reading this has ever been swimming in the rain, kissed someone in the rain, or just run through a torrential downpour like a mad person… then you know that our friend rain can be pretty fun.
Finally, I love going to sleep listening to the rain drip-dropping and pitter-pattering on the leaves of the beautiful Frangipani trees by our bedroom window. I love waking up to hear it’s still raining outside and know that I am all snuggled and dry in my bed.
Bring it on rain – I’m British, I have wellies and I can learn to love my affro… So nuuuuuuuuh.