Sunday, May 01, 2005

Barefoot in the rain

I just went walking barefoot in the rain.

Lightning was striking the hills in the distance. Their sloping shoulders, usually so close and clear, were wrapped in grey, luminous mists. Not the dark, dangerous clouds of a summer storm, but that highly-charged, backlit wonder of an early thunder storm.

The thunder was a ripping sound, not a rumble. A stretching, tearing, up-in-the-morning-and-taking-on-the-day roar. Big fat drops of warm rain beat down the newly planted aquilegias and lupins in the garden, and kept the bemused cats indoors. The road was a river. The sky was the colour of old tarmac.

Under my feet the road was smooth, washed clean, faintly warm. The water running over my feet was somehow a taste, not a touch. Sweet, delicious. Smooth.

The tang in the air, the drops striking my head – harder and slower under the great incongruous limes down the road – the washing of my feet, all of it was poignantly perfect.

I remember distinctly the last time I laughed, barefoot, under the arch of a thunderous sky. I was nineteen, slightly drunk, and in the company of friends. We sat in the gutter-streams outside a pub in a little village in Essex called Writtle, and screamed when the lightning struck the houses round the green.

There’s some sort of connection established, in the link between the water running through you hair, the taste of it invading your mouth, the feel of it dripping from your fingers, sliding over your feet. Water is life, after all, and life, like water, is a cycle.

I love walking barefoot in a thunderstorm. But I haven’t done it in twelve years.

What was I thinking?

The sun just came out. The birds are singing.

(I make no apologies for waxing lyrical)


At 3:19 pm, Blogger Julie said...

Thank you.

At 4:28 pm, Blogger Anna Lucia said...

You're welcome, hon.

At 5:59 pm, Blogger Sela Carsen said...

Now I wish it would rain. I dearly need to taste the rain beneath my feet again. Thank you.

At 8:37 pm, Blogger Julie said...

On the other hand, we had the same thunderstorm here last night at 3 am, and I ended up out in it barefoot, too, because water had come pouring into our back porch and I was bailing it out wearing only a t-shirt. It was cold and I got hail in my hair and mud splashed halfway up my bare legs.

Context really is everything.

At 8:49 pm, Blogger Anna Lucia said...

Well, yes.

I didn't mention, for instance, that the stuff that the road was being washed clean OF included almost every residue known to farming mankind. I was wading in very dilute slurry.

I could also have discussed the fact that the cars that passed me probably thought I was certifiable. But since everyone in my village already thinks I'm on the cuckoo side of eccentric, I didn't pay much attention.

It's all about perspective...

And context. ;-)

At 8:41 am, Blogger Biddy said...

Thank you sweetness.

At 7:51 pm, Blogger Melissa Marsh said...

I loved your post, Anna. Of course, I absolutely adore thunderstorms. Out on the plains of Nebraska, you can see them rolling towards you and there's really nothing quite like it. When I was a girl, I'd go out into the fields and watch the storm gather around me, relishing in the anticipation of thunder, rain, and lightning. Sigh...I miss that living in the city. Thanks for the wonderful images. :)


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