Friday, September 15, 2006

The Rain in Spain

It’s sunny today. This usually isn’t remarkable in Spain—but after the past four gloomy days, it is. At the beginning of the week, it began raining. Then it rained harder. Thunderstorms—big ones, the really threatening kind that led us to unplug appliances—came and went. There were downpours, sheets of water, rivulets at curbs and on sidewalks. We got caught in the rain the night we saw our new apartment, taking refuge under the lip of a building but still getting splashed and wet. People in Spain are not used to such weather; there’s much stunned running, few umbrellas at hand. Spain itself is ill-equipped for it. Metro lines shut down; telephone and internet service was disrupted. In the course of one day—Tuesday—Spain got 30% as much rain as it gets in an entire year. The towels I unwisely hung on the line during a lull on Monday stayed soaked until just this afternoon. Accustomed to constant sunshine, I felt my energy slip, my spirits sag. I love gloomy fall weather but perhaps this was too much all at once.

It’s sunny today. Blue skies are back. Laundry is hanging on lines again; fingers are crossed that the weather holds, at least as long as it will take for the clothes to dry. The city has a rinsed-off feeling, clean and cool. Fall is, suddenly, here. It’s warm in the sun but there’s an edge to the warmth; the nights have been cold enough for jackets and jeans. It’s nice to be in Spain as the season changes. Soon I’ll be adding layers, repositioning sweaters from the backs of drawers, pulling on socks and boots to go outside. So much is in store for these next few fall months: A move. More classes. More travel. More lucky time.

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