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Sydney, Australia
My musings and meanderings on childhood - mine juxtaposed with that of my kids'. Everyday incidents and images from our life in Sydney turn my thoughts towards my own wonder years growing up in Bandra, Bombay, India.

29 February 2008

When it Rains, it Reigns!

Thanks to the thunderstorms unleashed on Sydney over the past few days, we’ve witnessed some spectacular sound and light shows. The lightning forking across the sky followed by the reverberating claps of thunder, brought to mind the opening lines of this poem:

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out like shining from shook foil;

-God’s Grandeur, Gerard Manley Hopkins

C1 and C2 enjoying a drizzly day

The rains also got me reminiscing about the monsoons in Bombay when I was growing up:
· Of the 13th of June which could only mean one thing - the first day of school. And if it were the first day of school, you could bet your bottom rupee it would be raining.
· Of us kids, clad in our raincoats (as we grew older, the raincoats made way for the more ‘grown-up’ umbrellas) and gumboots on our way to school, bearing our burden of notebooks freshly wrapped in the  brown paper, filled with trepidation about our new teacher.
· Of kids jumping in puddles that had little ‘rainbows’ in them thanks to the oil from cars.
· Of umbrellas fighting a losing battle with the wind, getting overturned a million times, spokes coming apart, and then being fixed by the chatriwalla on various street corners.
· Of waking up to the earthy (but heavenly!) scent of the rain awakening the soil.
· Of earthworms emerging after a long hibernation, only to be sprinkled with salt by
naughty boys who then watched with morbid fascination as they died a slow death.
· Of gutters gushing with rainwater - the perfect place to have a paper-boat race or catch tadpoles in jam jars.
· Of the trees shrugging off the year-long build-up of city soot to flaunt their freshly-washed foliage.
· Of dogs (and babies) yelping in fright and ducking for cover every time Thor let loose one of his thunderbolts.
· Of shelling mungfalli (boiled peanuts) on a wet Sunday afternoon and sinking our teeth into coal-roasted butta (corn) rubbed with just the right mix of salt, chilli powder and lemon from the passing buttawalla's cart.
· Of B’s favourite childhood song My Favourite Things (Rainsdrops~on~roses and whiskers~on~kittens, Bright~copper~kettles and warm~woollen~mittens...).

So tell me, what's your favourite season? What do you like most about the rains?

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