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Petrichor is that earthy smell which appears after it rains, the smell of the ground drying. Humans are apparently extremely sensitive to this fragance, despite its toxicity. The atmosphere in the UK was dominated by that scent for most of August, since the weather was stormy and unruly.
In India, it’s common for rain to be celebrated. Each time rain falls, my mum fondly recalls her days in Mumbai, where during monsoon season, she would rush outside to run around in the rain with her siblings.
I, on the other hand, could not be further from my mum’s enthusiasm. I was born in summer – I am very much a summer baby. Give me sun, give me boiling hot roasting heat, give me a tan so dark my body is 10 different shades of brown. Do NOT give me rain!
I think I despise rain because of pathetic fallacy, which is a technique writers use to establish a connection between the weather and a mood. Rain = sad, Sun = happy. We all have these binaries floating around in our brains somewhere. and I am a victim to having read many books which use that opposition for scene-setting, and now subscribe to it.
So, is it any surprise that when I looked outside and saw rain, all I saw was yet another hurdle? My brain and my environment were against me – nature and nurture were both being cruel.
I resigned my legs to my bed, and nestled myself between warm, inviting bedsheets.
But something felt wrong. I wasn’t comforted by my resignation. It bothered me. The thought of going outside buzzed in my mind, and I couldn’t swat it away.
Begrudgingly, I made my way downstairs, but still didn’t feel I had enough energy to go for a full walk and move outside of my usual comfort zone. I am fortunate enough to have a nice garden (which has become very useful during COVID), so instead I told myself going outside somewhere would be enough for today.
I stepped out of my door, and I realised I hadn’t even noticed it had stopped raining because I was so absorbed in thinking about going outside. Looking down, I saw tiny pools of water had formed after the rain, and for some reason I found them oddly comforting. I didn’t walk around my garden, I just stood there for a little while and let the wind blow my hair about, and I felt a sense of joy radiate through me.
I think the tiny pools are a good metaphor for this day – that little steps are just as good as big ones.