How does the rain make you feel?

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The monsoon is a tropical concept. Something that exists in imaginations of exotic, underdeveloped and far away destinations. I heard stories of torrential rainfall for days on end and it seemed romantic and like something Gabriel Garcia Marquez would create a novel out of. The monsoon is defined as a “seasonal reversing wind accompanied by corresponding changes in precipitation”. Could the reversal of winds be somehow linked to a reversal or change in perception?

On one side, the Bombay monsoons are as far away from romantic as you can imagine. This is my first experience of such immense and dramatic rainfall, and it’s only day one. There have been dire floods and rains so strong that houses collapse, however once you move beyond the physical, there seems to be something more emotional connected to rainfall.

Water is a cleansing force and rain is understood as washing away (I’m going to stay away from the millions of homes, lives and livelihoods that have been washed away by the rain) the past, the summer heat, a season, a feeling. It’s quixotic to feel the rain washing away old memories but there is something so innate about the sound of rainfall that you almost imagine life begins anew.

The wet earth gives rise to new life and new stories. Whether it’s washing off the caked dry summer dust or giving rise to fauna and flora; the rain has a really cleansing effect. The sentiments associated with this can range from claustrophia and damp confinement to freedom and regeneration. Either way, the rain elicits such a barrage of emotions; especially when it is inundatory and new. The first rain exposes this range of emotions and feelings. The overcast shadows and slowing down of natural life is so well suited to contemplation that it isn’t surprising how poetic the English find their gloomy climate.

In keeping with the positive energy I feel in Bombay, this is probably the first time I’ve even considered a 24 hour downpour to be anything more than an extreme nuisance to daily life. The thought of renewal seems so obvious that I can’t help but feel lighter.

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