There is always that one thing that can cheer each of us.
That one thing which is an instant mood changer, a soul lifter, a smile bringer, a safe haven.
For some, it is that corner of their home, sometimes a study den, often the sound of the waves or the silence of the hills.
For me, it’s rains.
Rains do the magic for me.
From beginning to end.
From the time the grey clouds take over the clear blue sky, the start of thunder and lightning, sometimes the slow start of raindrops and then when they fall with a speed of a gushing river.
Have you ever felt the presence of it when you least expected?
Though my belief in idol worship is no more than bowing my head out of respect when I cross one or thanking in my night prayers, I have somehow over the years started believing in a soul protector for each of us.
It was years ago and at that time, it had felt like a huge non recoverable loss.
The inter public school tennis match.
We lost junior doubles and I lost my first inter school match. We came back with a bag full of not just tennis racquets and balls but of regrets.
Constant volley of thoughts on what if we had played it that way or what if that shot wasn’t missed.
It was one of my toughest day.
Boarding school makes you a hungry stomach 24/7 but I had lost all my appetite in the dining area that evening. I had this huge lump in my throat of anger and regret.
When the lights were off at 10pm, I let my first tear drop. I went out of the room and sat on the parapet with my legs dangling, thinking how did I fail!
I couldn’t swallow the regret and it was then with my tears, I heard thunder and a downpour.
Somewhere, in that pouring rain, I told myself, it wasn’t the last match and won’t be last loss but deal with it to learn for better.
And I did.
There were no recordings to replay a match but in those days, people interacted more, watched more intensely and shared with more openness.
There were enough inputs on my areas of improvements and hell I did work hard.
I lost many after that and won some too but never stopped participating and never stopped returning to court every morning and evening!
That pour was my first introduction to my soul protector.
Books are my shared first love. But my choices of reading invariably leave me breathless because of their intensity. Many a times, I read two books at a time, with one being much lighter than the other.
But rains with a cuppa and I have completed reading an entire book in that one day!
Rains calm my nerves.
Travel in the rain has made some of the most beautiful memories in my travelogue.
The green mountains, the havoc thunderstorm causes in the ocean, the sudden grey sky with drops coming down during a swim, the sights of aircrafts taking off under the pouring sky. The homestay verandah with friends flocking on snacks and drinks while the drops fall on the roof.
Rains were also my companion on my first camping trip.
It was a brutal climb up the mountain and there was no concept of porters. Hence, we carried the minimum possible stuff because it was all on our own shoulders. The trek was tough and pitching own tents was tougher. We struggled from start till the end.
It poured through the night but when we came out in the morning, it was surreal.
A sight no lens can capture. That morning, sitting on stones, next to the make shift cooking facility, drinking tea with glucose biscuits under raindrops falling which were now calmer to a drizzle. It made me feel alive.
There were smiles on faces, a sense of belonging but not owning. It’s a memory that became a life experience for me because of those raindrops.
Growing up years saw rainfall as a party time. Time to gather, make paper boats and let them row with flowing water on the roads. If one didn’t get drenched under the pour in the rainy season, it was termed as the biggest miss of the season!
Rains brought us closer to simple pleasures in life.
It is said, life doesn’t get any simpler than what we make it. Rains for me reiterate it to the best.
Every time I have felt that it’s a uphill climb in life, the sound of raindrops have fiercely protected my soul from that storm.
They make me look at life more than just breathing.
They make me understand that it’s a matter of choice. To see what is hurting you and facing it or pretending to it’s non existence while it slowly kills your soul.
Those raindrops have always been been there to fall with my tear drop or splash when my heart beams with happiness.
They have and will always be my soul protector.