“This. Is. Disgusting.”
As my coworkers and I made it into the office this morning, we all stared at each other in some level of shock and unhappiness, having been forced to come into the office on a miserable, dreary, grey, rainy New York day. I shook half a cloud off of my umbrella and squeezed my hair behind my cube, trying my best to wring out what water had managed to infiltrate my umbrella, hat and rain jacket before getting started on my day. I’d actually remembered to check the weather in the morning, and seeing the entire day promised to be a total mess, I didn’t bother putting on makeup, wore my glasses and even did the unthinkable: I wore sneakers on my commute. I got a great look at myself in the mirror of the elevator as I made it up the many floors to my office, and had to laugh at the sight of such a person – I could pass for a tourist or a newcomer, the opposite of the put-together New Yorker I try to emulate in my usual daily routine.
I’ve always loved the rain. There’s something beautiful about a city in the rain, the way the drops bounce off the buildings like a dance, a complete juxtaposition to the gloomy people underneath broken umbrellas below. I love a good pair of rainboots, dancing in a storm, shaking the weather out of my hair, inviting the lion’s mane of curls to wrap around my neck, my face, sticky with raindrops and dripping red dye. Any of the cities I’ve visited or lived in have such a distinct personality in the rain, the torrential downpours in Buenos Aires that come and go as quickly as you can take out your umbrella, the misty showers in Amsterdam, like walking in a cloud, or the languid steps in Paris in the rain, enamored with the romanticism of such weather in such a city. New Yorkers hate the rain; we hate walking behind the idiots with the big beach umbrellas, hate how quickly the street umbrellas break, just as a bus drives by, close enough to splash the city puddles all over your legs. But there’s a part of me that loves it too, loves the chance to see the city without the crowds of people distracted by the skyscrapers, the only person looking up amid a sea of downtrodden commuters.
There’s something going around this week, a misfire in the stars or maybe just a random series of coincidences in which I’ve gotten so many texts and calls from people who had something go wrong, a lost earring, a scolding from a boss, a piece of news that’s been feared for months. I’ve felt it too, sleeping in despite this being the first week I can do yoga again after the tattoo, reaching for potato chips and candy instead of sticking to the healthy fruits I’ve lugged from home. I think it’s just a reaction to the weather and the time of year, like the forthcoming forced merriment of the rapidly-approaching holidays needs the precursor of a rainy week and self-disappointment. I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the week, less rain and more holiday fun, with my company party on Thursday and a trip to Nyack for some shopping and dinner with my lovely friend M and her N on Saturday. And in the meantime, I’m fine soaking in some of the bad parts of the week for a few hours. After all, it won’t be like this forever – a good lesson to remember in all parts of life, whether soaking in the enormity of a life moving on, or just soaking in a New York City rainstorm on the way home from work.