As I leave the shopping centre to head home I notice a large crowd by the exit all peering intently at something evidently quite dire that is happening outside. As I approach the exit hoping to find a way past the obstruction it becomes clear that there is in fact nothing happening.
Oh, apart from the fact that it is raining.
Yes, rain, that terror from the skies that causes otherwise brave men to cuddle together for comfort at the portals to buildings across the city in mortal fear of getting wet. As I slide through the crowd and prepare to embark upon my adventure, a voice querulously notes “you’ll get wet!”.
Undaunted, I open the door and step outside – doubtless to gasps of horror from within that I am oblivious to – as I brave the rain that falls unheeding from the gloomy skies above. I have no umbrella and no form of protection save a tweed jacket and the attitude of a Victorian adventurer embarking upon his latest travels.
I stride along the pavement, head held high in defiance of all that the weather can thrust at me as around me, like mushrooms springing up after a spring shower, people hurry along with wide flat umbrellas held low over their heads and shoulders hunched to reduce the risk of water touching their necks. The poor souls who are without such protections dart furtively from shelter to shelter and watch the skies with wide eyes hoping that the rain might relent in it unwavering downpour.
I am truly blessed for I was born with a rare gift that – are you ready for this? – makes me immune to water. Yes, I am actually able to walk around our great Metropolis unaffected by the seeming disasters that befalls the common man who dares defy the random curfews that imposed upon our city by the rain gods.
Though, even I, blessed as I am will be slightly concerned about emerging into a heavy downpour of rain, my concerns are solely limited to how to dry off my clothes when I reach my destination. A quick visit to a toilet to wipe down with tissues and if an old fashioned hand dryer is available, to blow dry my hair. The modern dryers from Messrs Dyson being ably suited to drying hands are sadly deficient for the rest of the body.
However, the fears of a mild shower as expressed by common man are as naught to that which grips the London Underground at these hours of woe. The normally sloth-like creatures inhabiting the subterranean city will engage in Herculean feats of daring to deploy grand signs around their stations warning all comers to beware the “adverse weather”. Yes, the very moment a single drip of precipitation falls from the sky, the transport network will declare an emergency and staff in a panic worry about slippery floors and dripping hair.
The once-a-decade snow fall earlier this year was adverse. The thunderstorm a couple of months ago that dumped a months worth of rain on London in less than an hour was also indeed adverse.
A shower of rain is normal, it is England. It is not to be feared.
Don’t hide from it – don’t cower from it!
Rejoice in the rain, bestride it with glee. Embrace it’s arrival and breathe deep the cleansed air it leaves behind.
You’ll feel better for it, trust me.