Oh, what relief the rains can bring! One can almost feel the palpable gratitude of the rainforest tree outside my first floor balcony: how its millions of tiny leaves dance ever so slightly in response to the beatings of the rains.
I hadn’t realised before how this tree must be revered in my Bengali neighbourhood. There is a vermillion scarf fringed with gold tassels wrapped around the tree like a talisman.
On my balcony floor, the bougainvillea leaves look beaten by the weight of the falling rain. They droop to the floor, their pink flowers with their fuchsia centres pointing down as well.
It has been just 20 minutes since the downpour, but already the street is well nigh impassable for the pedestrian. Muddy brown flows, small rivers almost, flowing downhill.
Two young men – drenched to the bone – saunter past jauntily in their slippers. The rain is welcome after such a long, dry, irritable summer.
I pull up my dining room chair as close as possible to the balcony to try and see more.
|The leaves, glistening with thousands of rain droplets are a sight to behold.|
Back home in the far east where I am from, there would be a great slamming of windows and balcony doors as everyone hurries to take in their washing before they get soaked by the rain. But here, they let things be.
On the street below, an umbrella-clutching mother in a lavender kurta pyjama tries to reason with her argumentative sons on bicycles. They walk away and their bickering with them.
I am transfixed by the sheer green of the rainforest tree. There are no flowers yet – it is not the time – but the leaves, glistening with thousands of rain droplets are a sight to behold.
The road is now passable again. The muddy water has drained away. A woman in a purple sari, valiantly covering her head, scurries quickly past.
I think back on my life here thus far: whether I have healed sufficiently, whether or not I love myself enough.
I wish I was not a survivor, I wish I had had a different childhood but this was not to be.
But I think it is time to move on. I have spent enough time in this country.
And it has given me enough life lessons. One of which is: to welcome the rains, for the rainbows that will come after.