24 July 2019

My phone bleeps with weather warnings, extreme heat, and the long lists of what to do (drink water).

We are sitting inside our cool cocoon of a house - still cool without air conditioning but I wonder what would happen if this heat were to continue for a month. Stepping outside is like walking into an oven. It just climbed above 40°C.

This morning I cycled to work early and the forest smelled of dry pine and dust. Cycling home after lunch was another story I don't really wish to repeat.

It's officially a drought now. Or a threatening drought. A period of drought.
People talk about rain like a long lost friend, the sound of soft rain at night, the smell of rain on a summer lawn, the steam rising from the tarmac after a downpour.

after the rain from Mt. Brulee

When we lived in paradise, 3° south of the equator, it rained often, almost several times daily, mostly sudden thrilling showers.  For a moment, an orchestra of drumming raindrops on the tin roof, sheets of water gushing down all around the house, the ground covered in mirrors of water, dripping breadfruit trees and angry bird call.
Is this the rainy season, I asked one of my neighbours. He just laughed politely, no no Sabine, the rains come much later, after the xmas, and skipped elegantly over the puddles.
The daily rain made everything look immaculate. Shiny and moist and brand new and promising.
The rainy season could involve almost a whole day of steady rain, occasionally a landslide, flooding, the mangroves waist high in deep red water down by the estuary. The very stylish and careful would wear a long-sleeved garment for a brief period, looking like aliens.
after the rain down by the river

On a rainy season Sunday, we would sit on the plastic tiles by the open door, playing rounds of scrabble, listening to the Dexter Gordon tape, S outside, barefoot and dripping, splashing, a gang of shouting children.


ellen abbott said...

when things are normal, this part of Texas usually gets about 55" of rain a year. about 7 or 8 years ago we had a terrible drought, the entire state was in extreme drought conditions, wildfires were everywhere. we lost millions and millions of trees and not just from wildfire. trees that didn't succumb right away died a year or two later unable to overcome the stress. I hope you get some rain soon.

Ms. Moon said...

Like Ellen, I live in a place that generally gets at least a little rain every day. It comes and then it goes. We have had years though, where none came for what seemed like forever and I am not sure I've ever felt so deeply disturbed. It was like missing a limb.
May your rains come soon.

Dale said...

What a lovely evocation of paradise!
I wish I could bring you rain.

Colette said...

It is pouring rain right now in Central Florida. I wish I could share it with you. Rain makes me happy.

Anonymous said...

I've often wondered what life would be like nearer to the equator. Sounds lush and lovely. I hope you get some rain there and the temps cool down. Take care there, Sabine.

Joared said...

Enjoying your memory and, ah, yes, listening to Dexter Gordon! I recall years ago standing outside of Quito, Ecuador with one foot in each equator.

We hope to have emerged from California’s several year drought. Having high temps this week — over three digits centigrade with more next week. A/C feels good — had to resort to that some years ago give heat and conversion layers with smog.

Steve Reed said...

I hope you get rain soon. We had a brief blast of intense heat but for the moment at least we're back to normal, rain and all. Living on an island has its advantages, as you know! I love your memories of paradise. They remind me of my subtropical experiences in Florida and in other places I've traveled.

My life so far said...

You're having a drought and we're drowning here, flooding and cool temperatures. Global warming seems to be causing extreme weather events.

Hope it cools off soon for you and yours.