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Friday, May 9th, 2003

Welcome Rain

Thunderstorms bring cool relief

Rain and thunderstorms. We have had both in the last two days. After weeks of sweltering in 36°C (94°F)+ weather, the rains bring cool relief.

And it's a hard, driving rain: I watch from my balcony as the rain stipples the surface of the water in the kunda opposite the Sree Chaitanya Saraswata Krishnanushilana Sangha and ricochets off surface of the road and the marble floor outside the temple...

The thunderstorm is pretty impressive, with flashes of lightening and loud bursts of thunder. Though not quite as fierce, it reminds me of the terrible thunderstorms we used to have on the farm in South Africa, where I grew up.

The old stone house on the farm where I was born was surrounded by many tall eucalyptus trees that used to swish and sway noisily in the driving wind and rain. Every now and then one of them would be struck by lightening and come crashing down, and an acrid smell, like that of cordite would fill the air.

It was all rather terrifying, for us kids. For my mom too: she used to draw the curtains on all the windows and cover the mirrors in the house, and, during a particularly fierce storm, she used to light the holy candle that she had purchased from the repository at our local parish church.

My dad used to tease her about it, and comfort us saying, with a wink, that it was just "God rearranging His furniture up in heaven." He always elicited a covert, conspiratorial smile from us for this near blasphemy, for we knew how strongly my mom disapproved of such talk...

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