Rainstorms are the best time to enjoy my city. The thin silhouette of dust settles onto the ground and if I look very closely, somewhere between the mango trees of my neighbor’s house, I can notice the wind dancing. I can see its movements. Unlike what everyone says, the wind amongst my neighbor’s trees does not billow. It doesn’t blow softly or make the leaves rustle too much. During a thunderstorm, like the one I’m experiencing today…the wind swishes like it’s caught between the folds of a wet skirt. It swishes around gaily amongst the drying laundry, and amongst the long yards of saris, it positively dances. Almost like the extravagant hand gestures of a pagan gypsy.
My ritual for this kind of weather is unaffected by any possible situation. I sit on the terrace or the balcony with a cup of hot tea and soft buttery cookies. Sometimes, and it’s more of a recent addition, I write. I get my chatai onto the verandah and I write. Today, this insignificant ritual is becoming difficult to complete. The wind has an idea of its own. It’s too far gone in its mystical dance to be subtle or unseen. As a result, even with a stool to keep the door open, the verandah doors are swinging consistently with reckless abandon. One would think that these were those paper fans that flutter incessantly even in the mildest breeze.
There is a very kitschy hotel in the alley behind my house. It’s green
and red neon lights play with the shadows of the house behind mine to create numerous satanic picture onto the sidewalls of my house. Today,
I have a nicer picture to look at. The electricity of the colony is out. And the lightning in the clouds forms a beautiful picture. The houses behind mine form an intermingling seamless silhouette. It looks likes a long, plateau with a few bumps.
In front of my house is a beautiful garden with a tiny temple. The trees create a circular canopy around the temple. And tonight, under the brilliant electric violet flashes of light, the trees look darker and blacker. The sporadic bursts of light create a thin cloaky outline of the trees and the temple. It’s almost like a whitish violet veil. Feels very befitting.
As the rain goes tip, tup, tup, and falls in thick sheets, the vision ahead of me goes blurry. It starts to go watery around the edges, and then seeps onto the middle, just like you can see the rivulets of water drenching a water-color painting from the sides and then the whole picture just gets sludgy.
And to me, nothing has ever looked prettier.