On rain

It was raining this morning.

I’m the type of person who can’t immediately tell if it’s raining. Like most people, I use my five senses.

Some people are direct. They thrust their hands out the window or out of the doorway, palms up and fingers spread. They wait until they feel the splash on their skin. Some stick their tongues out instead and shut their eyes, taste the rain.

There are those who aren’t as willing to get wet, so they use their eyes. They look up to see if there are those swollen gray, gray clouds sending us showers. They look down to see if the drops are bouncing off of puddles on the concrete, or if the rain is sliding off of slick, green leaves so much brighter in the gray. They watch the raindrops wobble past with the wind on car windows. They discern the slashes the rain makes in the air.

Some people have sensitive ears. They hear the gutter gurgling or the gentle tapping on the roof. The storm can be so loud it sounds like waves crashing against the walls of the room. Car tires whish noisily past on the shining roads illuminated by amber lamps.

People like my brother can just feel when the weather’s changing. They feel it in their bones. People like my brother can feel it in their lungs.

Then there are the people like the man I saw at the bus stop, who had dropped his coins that bounced all over the drenched sidewalk. As the other onlookers continued waiting with their black umbrellas and fifty dollar boots, he crouched and scrambled to find his last quarters to pay for the fare. I watched, too, as the rain relentlessly pounded against his back and began to soak through his dark blue coat. We made eye contact when I bent down to hand him a coin that had rolled next to my shoe.

And judging from the mixture of gratitude and desperation in his eyes, I don’t think he’d felt a thing.


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