Something I Learned: A Brief History of Rain


Growing up in Ohio, my family took a trip to Lake Erie each June, as soon as school was out. I loved swimming off the dock, sailing the little Sunfish sailboats, biking up and down the path around the cottages, and sitting outside the deli with an ice cream cone. But also, I loved the storms. Lake rain seemed different from rain in suburbia. It was mesmerizing. I've still never seen such purple lightning as those strikes on the lake. 

Years ago, I spent a couple of summers working a ranch in the Crazy Mountains of Montana. There, it usually snowed into early June, and then settled into hot afternoons and cool evenings. Bill, the old cowboy who owned the ranch used to say, any day that it hasn't rained after the 4th of July equals drought. One time, when I was in town on a supply run, after weeks of no rain, the skies opened up. Everyone stopped what they were doing and started clapping and cheering. 


In my 4 years in New York City, I probably went through two dozen umbrellas. NYC rain always seemed to come with wind. And it always caught me when I hadn't checked the weather. I'd be sitting on the subway and people would run on, soaked. Thus resulting in a closet full of bodega umbrellas.  

I've been in Colorado for 2 years, and we get a shower every once in a while, but rarely all-out rain. I don't own an umbrella at all here. Many times I've been out biking and gotten caught in a shower, but have almost always ended up dry by the time I got home. On Tuesday it was supposed to rain, so I stuffed my jacket in my jersey and set out. It ended up beautiful and hot. But for the last (almost) 48 hours, it has absolutely poured. It's good: we need it. I just planted strawberries and vegetables last weekend, so I couldn't have scheduled it better. But generally, people in Colorado don't know what to do in this weather. I will say, the flowers are absolutely drunk on it, so that alone is worth the disturbance. The weekend looks clear and hot; certainly it won't be long before we'll be wishing for another good soaking.