It's raining like it does at home. The sky ripped by lightning and angry thunder bolts. The rain falls in a constant slant of water, a sheet of diaphanous grey. A man sits in his white pickup on the parking lot, headlights and wipers turned on, watching the rain. Other than him and us no one else sees nature in her feral splendor.
I remember monsoons from years ago, rain falling down a flowering jasmine vine, crows getting drenched on the clothesline, Sal leaves glistening brilliant emerald, water coursing in harried rivulets down its gnarled trunk. The smell of tea as Ma pours it out of the pot into delicate bone-china cups. I am of age. We are now friends who can sit together and talk for hours over a cup of tea.
Other memories come from thoughts of tea and rain - their intimate mix. A and I sitting in our living room. The sky is dark and it's pouring outside. I ask him "Can I get you some tea ?" He smiles "No, that would mean five minutes less of your company. I would rather have five more minutes than a cup of tea " Five minutes in three hours count. They remain precious to this day.
R asks me "Which is your favorite season ?" I say "Monsoon" He asks "Why ?" I say "I don't know. Falling rain moves me deeply" He says seriously "You know, I will feel different about rain. Anything you love turns special to me" I laugh. Maybe it rains today where he is and he remembers what he once said to me.
P and I are sharing his umbrella as we walk down the park in rain. Our shoulders brush sending a thrill down to the pit of my stomach like it has suddenly been hollowed. I feel depleted of words for as long as it takes for that sensation to fade. He is quiet too. I realize years later how special and unique that was and how unlike anything I have felt in my older years.