Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Rain, Rain, Come Again?

AS USUAL, waiting till the Asian Brown Clouds gave way to dark monsoon clouds, authorities concerned chose to dump gravels on a pot-holed road so that the first showers itself will see to it that their class enemy -- the honourable tax-paying citizen -- got a free training in fox-trotting and a splash of red from head to toe if he dared to walk down the lane, even from a cyclist who passes by him.
And surprisingly, it worked.
Even my XL umbrella couldn't resist the temptation of being coloured gravel red.
True to a nationalist I cursed the rain instead of the good-humoured officials, for choosing the wrong time and wrong place to show its might.
On return from office I ask my children: "Which is the best season?"
"Rainy season," they shout.
"You know," they explain, "playing in the rain is the funniest thing to do."
But not walking along a slushy road to office, I murmur in disappointment and disagreement.
Is there anybody who dislike rain? I give a try.
"You will be the loser," says Jeshi from Bangalore. "I think 99 per cent of the people will love rain as I do. I just sit somewher and stare when it rain," she says.
With a vengeance I enter a popular discussion site on the Net and post: "Rain -- Good or Bad?"
I got 10 replies instantaneously.
'Unfortunately' Jeshi is proved right. Only two said they disliked rain or a rainy day. They attributed their dislike to the uneasiness in carrying an umbrella and the mess that the rain creates.
For a vast majority it's a pleasant intervention into otherwise mundane chores that sum up a day.
Sitting in Kovai (Coimbatore) you can think of rain drops gliding down electric lines... to infinity, wrote Renu from Kochi.
"We are enjoying the rain," says Mini from Thrissur. "With hot coffee and ada dosa."
"Rain is welcome," says Lali from Kozhikode. "But not during day time. It is very difficult to travel by road," she says and adds: "But only rain reveals the beauty of our surroundings."
Bad roads and traffic snarls are not caused by the rain. They are there even if it doesn't rain, adds Saneesh from Kannur.
"I like the smell of green earth it generates," says Smitha sweltering under 42 degrees in Gurgaon.
"Here it's sultry. The rain clouds are avoiding our horizon," writes Devan from Mumbai and adds "Hope you are fine."
The comments on the discussion forum ranged from "I like it because it gives me a free car wash" to "it is good for meditation" and "its sound is exciting."
"I don't carry an umbrella when I go to school to fetch my child," says Lekha from Thiruvananthapuram. "We walk home playing in the rain."
Some pointed out that its an art to listen to the melody the rain generates. It varies according to the nature of the surface where it falls and its velocity.
A soft drizzle on palm fronds generates romantic music, which can even, at times, attain the proportions of a raga vistara by a Carnatic musician. A downpour on a concrete terrace can echoe an MJ composition.
And when it rain on a sheet of water -- like in Kavalam in Alappuzha, when you sit in a boat and stare at the horizon that gradually melts with the ripples caused while rowing -- you forget yourself. Its absloute bliss.
Life becomes simple.
It brings in memories too.
As Saraswathi in Thiruvananthapuram says: "You will never catch me cursing the rain. No matter how difficult it is to travel, dry clothes, keep the house tidy. Forget the cold and sniffles. My early memories of rain are about me playing in my house with dolls as a child and watching it pour outside. My father listening to old Hindi songs and doing his files, smell of firewood burning from kitchen with my mother readying to prepare another dish, my grandmother holding court in the veranda... the feeling of security, home, family... is something the rain evokes in me even now."
For Anu (Anasuya) in Kochi, rain is a pointer to her future. "I can see myself by the window, some 50 years later, nursing gnarled knuckles, and silver hair, watching the same bloody rain."
There is something soul satisfying about staring at the rain, she says.
"Watching the convulsions of the monsoon skies between coffee and bitter-sweet verse, I feel its okay to be born after all. I can afford to spend an entire day in a chair with my coffee mug and a book. Not even my perpetual bowel concerns or my rapidly falling hair are going to distract me from this meditative calm. I look for butterflies among the shiny wet leaves of the large bread fruit tree. I know they are all probably dead or enjoying a brighter day at their migratory havens. But I look for the same. The fireflies too have disappeared. I miss those fire trails they leave."
Not satisfied with all these vouchsafing, I look for a definition for rain. And I get it: "Rain is liquid precipitation." It contains water -- a ubiquitous chemical substance that is essential for the survival of all known forms of life.
1. The normal annual rainfall of Kerala is 3,107 mm (national average is 1,197mm). The State has the benefit of the South-West and North-East monsoon. Although, quantum wise the rainfall received is fairly high, its distribution shows wide temporal and spatial variations. On an average the number of rainy days is in the range of 120-140 in a year. The annual yield of water in Kerala in a normal year is around 7,030 crores cubic metres. The utilisable water resource is around 4,200 crore cubic metres.

2. In July 2001, the State witnessed spells of scarlet, yellow, brown and black rain in eight districts.


kavalamsasikumar കാവാലം ശശികുമാര്‍ said...

wah krishna wah...thx thx a lot 4 this piece...just now i came back to my lodge room from MG road (Kochi).... what a rain was that....un expected...2day was a sunny day...till 6 15 pm i was dis appointed because of the absence of clouds in these monsoon season....but it was amazing....suddenly that happend.... with a sound of long laugh rain poured..... i felt that my old LP school friend apeared in front of me.... then we ran together...she splashed on me.. i tried to escape from she.. but she run behind me...in front of me...over me... together we played a lot... and now she and her lot of lovers with me throug you...thx...SASI

mikimbizi said...

Rain... a laughing, wailing,spontaneous, liquid poetry.

This post is beautiful.

Deliberately Thoughtless said...

Rain.. it is nice to eat garam garam bajjis and vadas with a cup of steaming coffee.............
Rain.. he is my sweetheart...