“Some people feel the rain, others just get wet.”
― Roger Miller, Bob Dylan, Bob Marley
It rained yesterday, and I walked in it. No umbrella, no raincoat, no hoodie, no hurry. With every drop of rain that fell on to my skin I felt an icy sensation of gloom, joy, freedom and peace – yes, all that at once; my mind took a masterclass of mixed emotions soon after I was born. Also, rain has an ethereal power to make you a little bit pensive, a little bit melancholy, a little bit carefree, and a little bit merry. It was one of the funniest men that ever lived who gave rise to one of the saddest quotes about rain: “I always like walking in the rain, so no one can see me crying.” I used to do that you know…just like Charlie Chaplin, but I wasn’t crying yesterday. I felt a little gloomy because the falling rain splashed on to me the stinging memories of the yesteryear, but then I was happy because the road led me on invitingly, casting away my fears. I felt free because I left behind the pain I once felt when walking in the rain, and I felt peaceful because the November rain that covered me was inexplicably beautiful.
I felt the rain as if it was trying to comfort me; I felt it like it was singing to me. Maybe it was all the tears I cried since three Novembers ago, now falling down to soothe me. The chilly air didn’t bother me; they say a frozen heart cannot feel colder; maybe that’s what’s happened to my heart finally. I didn’t care that I was getting wet, instead, letting the rain fall on to me almost tranquilised me. “Will people think that I’m out of my mind if they see me?” It did occur to me, but I didn’t care. We should all walk in the rain once in a while, just to feel it. There isn’t a madness in it, but there is sincerity in it. Letting people know that you are choosing to feel the rain isn’t the same as the helpless alternative of getting wet in it. And so, it should be included in cultural ethos.
The thing about rain is, if you watch it for long enough, it can call out to your deepest memories to rouse and wistful thoughts to flutter. The thing about walking in the rain is, if you take it all in, those deepest memories and wistful thoughts will wash over you with a strange palpable feeling. No matter how synonymous sunshine is with happiness, rain can make you feel equally better. Whether it falls in a soft drizzle or in heavy sheets, it has a magical element that can come to our rescue at various times. “No clouds in the sky” is great, but if there are clouds in the sky, I hope they fall away as calming rain, comforting us in our bad times and reminding us of the bitter-sweet taste of life in our good times. At the end of the walk, I felt like, for a short time, I lived another life – a life where walking through the rain is a rite of passage, to be a little bit wiser when you are a little bit older.