(Chicago, IL, USA)
There's nothing quite like rain in the spring. Always the first thunderstorms of the year are exciting.
First you get the tension. Like the air is stretched to paper thinness by the approaching storm. The smell of ozone and the aching heaviness as the bright spring day turns dark. Clouds covering the sun. People eyeing the blackening sky. Shoulders hunch - as if that will fend off the coming rain.
Then the first fat, swollen drop hits your shoulder. Surprisingly, shockingly cold. A spike of returning winter driven into your shoulder. Scarcely have you processed the sensation than the second drop hits the pavement at your feet. Nickel sized splash on dusty ground. Then a third, and a fourth and suddenly you're running for cover as the sky seems to split and the descending torrent claims you. Marking you down on heaven's scoresheet. One point. One more who didn't get out of the way in time.
But as the storm laughs at you, you laugh back. Luxuriating in the first drenching downpour as the rain soaks you. Your clothes become saturated, sticking to your clammy skin. Drops sneaking their way under your collar. Dripping rat tails of hair crying on your shoulders.
And you give in. You surrender to it. You realize that there's a certain point you reach in being rained on when you really can't get any wetter than you are right now so you capitulate gracefully. If you were wearing a hat you feel like you'd tip it to the clouds. Just a gesture to acknowledge the fact that the storm has won this round.
So finally you get under cover. Beneath the drumbeat of the rain on your roof and the streaks of water sheeting over your windows, turning the world outside into a carnival hall of mirrors and you towel off and wait for the rain to stop.
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