I let the babies sleep in this morning, recovering from the hardcore partying they did yesterday at the local fall festival PLUS looking for Halloween costumes. Those two are wild! Must hide the liquor and car keys.
After dropping Big B off at school, I looked in my rearview and Sassy was staring out at the rain. "Whatcha thinkin' about, SuperSass?"
"Oh nothing. As you can see, I have a scratchy throat too, like Big B. Also, I was staring at the rain." She continued to watch the drops, transfixed.
Rain even makes the little ones withdraw; thoughtful and melancholy. One of my clearest childhood memories was me sitting in the front seat of my parent's station wagon (very likely also not wearing a seatbelt, but we already know that the 70's were the decade of living on the edge), lulled into near-sleep by the rhythm of the windshield wipers. I watched as a drop of water started gliding slowly south, absorbing each drop it touched along the way, until finally it was a shimmering, amoeba-like blob, only to be splashed violently into the street by the wipers, in the midst of their snow-angel arc.
Fall rain has the power to cleanse, to settle my chatty five-year-old into contented silence, to tamp down the leaves into the beginnings of compost. It grants permission to withdraw into contemplative stillness, to have another cup of tea or coffee or cider, to wrap a sweater tightly around, warding off the chill. Unlike summer rain, which is usually greeted with disappointment over ruined plans and soggy paper plates at a barbeque, fall rain seems expected, part of the deal, making us almost thankful. 'At least it's not colder,' we say. 'Can you imagine how much snow this would be if it were colder?'
Fall rain. Permissable melancholy, accompanied by hot beverages and a warm sweater.