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Dancing In The Rain




Tell me how many beads there are
In a silver chain
Of evening rain


For some reason, I love rainy days in the Philippines. Maybe because I grew up in the province and the rainy season there ushers in fresh-scented mornings, green rice fields, and merry dancing in the rain.

When I was studying and working in Manila, I still love rainy days. Even if it means flooded streets (UST is a water war zone during typhoon months... good thing I was not wearing a white uniform), double morning and afternoon rush on the roads, and the loss of the art of commuting, rainy days usher in a different kind of solace and comfort in my life. For some reason, moments created on rainy days are what I remember the most. Like a stumble on a puddle that led me to know a friend in our neighborhood, a parade that made my high schoolmates and I walk in our wet uniform (white, gah!) for a kilometer, an overloaded jeep that let me sit closely with my crush, a sulong sa baha with my college best friends, a life-changing conversation over hot lattes on one cold August night, a deadline that needed to be met despite typhoon Milenyo... Oh, rain!

The first ever sign of rain I saw in Riyadh, KSA

As you well know, we rarely get rain here in Saudi Arabia. I was already living and working for half a year in the desert when I first experienced rain. It was refreshing, to say the least. I heaved a sigh of relief from the thought that it gets pretty normal here too, even if it takes a little while. Okay, maybe a long while. But then again, in this place, when it rains, it literally pours... on the streets. Riyadh roads get flooded with a mere 5-minute drizzle. Drizzle, yes.

I like the rain. It is gentle and furious at the same time. It hurts but it soothes. It brings me joy and nostalgia. The rain also taught me patience and perseverance. Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass... it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.

When was the last time you danced in the rain?

***

Amid a gloomy weather, a joyous nation begins a new era. Our 15th president has been inaugurated. I honestly hope that the government of President Noynoy Aquino will be different from former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's government (I love saying the "former" before the former president's name!). I sincerely hope that President Aquino, with all his plans for the Philippines, will not forget the Overseas Filipino Workers.

Mr. President, we're just here.

PS. I do not rant or rave about politics anywhere in my online homes (and I rarely do in person) but allow me to say the above words because it's a darn new president. We haven't had one for nine years... or maybe longer.




► Read Janelle's previous articles here.

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