When I was little I loved the rain. I loved how dark the sky would get during a thunderstorm, and the way lightning would cut across the evening sky. I loved the rumbling of thunder as I fell asleep at night. Even in college I loved the rain. We used to wear rain jackets with shorts and flip-flops and hang out in the rain, beers in hand. I loved the smell of rain, and the way it would fill the forest near my dormitory. And I loved the quiet after a good, hard rain, when the birds chirping would be the only sound in the woods.
But then I got a job and an apartment in the city, and had to take the subway to work. I would walk in my suit or dress pants and heels to the subway, umbrella in hand, and then wait on the sweltering platform with all the other wet riders on their way to work. We’d pack into a wet subway car, no one wanting to sit as umbrellas and rain jackets covered the seats with water. Then back out into the rain, the wind turning my umbrella inside out and soaking me head to toe. There was one day when I got to the subway entrance and found out that the tunnels had flooded and that I would have to walk to work, 89th street to Midtown, in a downpour. It wasn’t long before I started to hate the rain.
In the last few months, however, I’ve learned to love the rain again. Rain means springtime, the end of the long hard winters I’ve gotten used to here in Minnesota. It also means flowers, moss, and green leaves. Minneapolis has enough foliage that the after-rain smell that I loved when I was younger is back, along with the dark and varied skies I remember from childhood. Rain reminds me of the old adage, that the bad allows you to appreciate the good in life. Rain allows me to appreciate the sunny days, the warm days, the flowers and trees, a soft breeze on my face. It reminds me that dark days mean brighter days are on the horizon, and good things are on their way.