the blue umbrella

Screen Shot 2013-04-03 at 3.51.28 PM it is in the spring that new york turns wet.

wet and gray.

it is a different sort of wet than winter. a different sort of gray. it is a hazy weather, peppered by the most glorious and vibrant sun-drenched days.

i didn't understand spring till i moved to new york. didn't love spring until i lived here.

i think there is no more beautiful sound than a steady rain tapping and knocking at the window. i remember a particular night as a young girl being awoken by it. turning over to watch it stream down the diamond-latticed window. how i fought that night to stay awake, just to listen. but sleep won and i fell under.

each spring i watch as new yorkers around me become enraged by the constant showers. the gray and the mess and the inconvenience of it. (inconvenience. what an unimportant word. sometimes i think the word of manhattan is convenience, which is almost entirely why i want nothing to do with the place. no, that's not true, the word of midtown is convenience. i'll happily take the rest of the manhattan). i watch as new yorkers are undone by the rain and i want to say, it happens every spring. every spring we get rain like this. why are you surprised? we have a short memory for weather here. it helps us survive.

but as others loft curses and epithets skyward i rejoice. i love the rain. i have always loved the rain. i think it's the texan in me. the texan who understands the progression of that odd mix of black and green as it moves in and fills the air. the texan who craves the low-roll of thunder. the texan who thinks few things more beautiful than lightning illuminating a low, wide sky, if only for a moment.

i was explaining this recently. sitting in a small french gastrotque in the west village, my blue umbrella poking from my purse. i was explaining this deep, guttural need for rain when mid-sentence, the man across the table, leaned right in and kissed me. the kind of kiss that is unhurried and easy, having almost nothing and everything to do with the subject at hand. and when he pulled away, my fingers still on his beard, he looked at me, pursed his lips, settled back in his chair and said, i interrupted you, what were you saying? something about rain, i trailed off. there are some things i like even more than a thunderstorm.

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