Thursday, June 12, 2014

Monsoon Season Arrives

While we were in Delhi last week we read that the monsoon had reached our fair city, which is about as close to the tip of India as you can get, save one other city where few people live.  This idea of the monsoon's arrival was confirmed by my Keralan students that week, but when our driver picked us up from the airport and I asked him how the monsoon was going, he laughed and looked at me a little funny and said, "There is no monsoon yet, mam. Tomorrow night it will come.  This is just a little rain."

So much for weather accuracy, which is equally poor on the plains of the Miwest  as it is in the deep south of India.  Of course he was right, and last Sunday the rains began in earnest.  It is so far very enjoyable, no floods, no one getting hurt.  The awful humidity of May is forgotten, replaced by fresh breezes which sometimes erupt into gales, which herald an upcoming downpour.  When the rain begins, it is mostly silent, so you can hear it hit all the greenery, and not much else.  Occasionally there is a rumble of thunder, but that's not typical.  Mostly the humidity builds, the grey clouds roll through, and when it's at its threshold, the sky opens and down comes the rain.  I tried to capture it on my camera, but it's hard to film rain, so it looks like it's not raining.  However, if you look into the horizon you see what appears to be a mist or fog, which is actually light rain.  Sometimes the rain is pouring sheets of intensity, but that doesn't seem to last too long.  I read in today's newspaper that the "real monsoon intensity" will be felt from "…tonight onward" whatever that means.
I like the way the rain is washing the buildings like this museum at our park at the bottom of the hill, making everything a little  brighter, as does the gentle light fil

Neem tree comes into full bloom just as Monsoon rains arrive.
tered through the clouds.  I have relearned my rule of watching the natives and copying them, because today I was ready to head to the florist when I noticed a strong breeze and no one on the street.  I decided to sit on the terrace and get a little film of the winds and see what developed.  An hour later the rain stopped and people started to appear, so I put on my shoes and grabbed my purse, and my umbrella, and was on my way.  There is a relaxed, quieter pace now that the rains have arrived, and I'm all for it.  The children started school on the first of the month, too, so there are far fewer Indian tourist buses on the street leading to our apartment.  So far, monsoon is working well for me.

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