Tag Archives: Rain

A Test of Gratitude

After spending 5 days in Melbourne, where it dropped to 7 degrees in the nights and mornings, I was looking forward to returning to the warmth of Sydney, where at least autumn temperatures are supposed to be warmer.

Unfortunately, nature seemed to have other plans for us, as the state of New South Wales was hit by one of the worst storm winds in decades, causing over 200 000 homes to lose power, deaths, and traffic disturbances.

Here in the valley below the Blue Mountains, the most inconvenience we have suffered is the loss of hot water and heat. That’s all. I know people could go on about how freezing cold our water is (as if the weather isn’t cold enough) and how we’re shivering under our blankets at night because our heaters aren’t working, but if we just look at the people who have had to evacuate because of the floods and storm, we are so much more fortunate. On top of that, the accommodations office actually took the trouble to assign us alternative rooms for sleeping and bathing (I took the bathing option, just not the sleeping one). I surprised myself by feeling gratitude for all that has been arranged, instead of feeling like a victim of circumstances. All that mindfulness practice must be more useful that I thought possible. More incentive to strive on.

Today the skies and winds are calmer, and we finally see the sun. But the homes without electricity are estimated to go on without for another week, until the affected infrastructures are repaired. The roads and tracks which have been damaged will take time to repair. The lives which have been lost will never be recovered. Praying and thinking deeply for all those who are going through difficult times.

Norwegian Wood

Norwegian Wood Screen shot

I once wondered what is it about rain that makes people love it so much. Where did the romantic idea of sitting by a window, reading a book in silence, while the rain falls outside, soothing our souls with its falling rhythm, come from?

I found the answer in Norwegian Wood. Murakami has never failed me yet.

“When it’s raining like this,” said Naoko, “it feels as if we’re the only ones in the world. I wish it would just keep raining so that the three of us could stay together.”

And it dawned on me that perhaps the nature of rain does have an inert power to make us feel safe, to make us feel as if we’re ¬†enveloped in a cocoon, which nothing could ever penetrate. As long as the rain keeps falling, time will stand still. We are safe.

And in our world of constant changes, in our world where so many of us have been hurt because we trusted wrongly, where so many of us have been disappointed by lack of stability, we yearn for the security of the rain, falling in the distance, wrapping us in an invisible cocoon. We yearn for it, even if we know it will not last forever.