The rain means a lot of things to a lot of people. It might be a feeling of nostalgia, a longing for someone or simply a need to pee. Just like everyone, I too get taken away by drizzles for my own unique experiences. That is what makes it so beautiful; every drop fills the different voids in our different lives, since the stupid scorching sun can't. Let me share some of my sweet rain moments and I'm sure we'll be able to relate when it pours down yet again.
Sometimes, life gives us no choice but to go out onto the streets in the rain, and that's when I embrace it to the fullest. Water everywhere, covering the roads, the cars, and me. The muddy path it forms somewhat entices me. I step on the mud from time to time, whether I do it deliberately or not, I don't know. But when I do, memories come crashing into my mind, of simpler times. A time when I was innocent and full of life. It reminds me of a place where I spent my childhood. A field filled with mud created by the rain, people alongside me some of whom could've been my cousins, and a sport that never came home. Running through my hometown, and endlessly kicking a ball, that too all brown and drenched. Alas, those memories quickly fade when I lift my foot from the mud and the rain washes it away. It's amazing to see that despite Dhaka improving so much throughout the years, the roads still get muddy, displaying a heartfelt commitment to not forget its roots in the village mud.
Vehicles help me remember more of my past. As I walk alongside the footpath, cars and bikes often rush past me. In doing so they hurl a wave of water in my way, as if they want to make me wetter. This takes me back to that same place again, only this time I was surrounded by water and my cousins were splashing it at me, some even trying to drown me. Those were the times. I instinctively wait for another car to splash me again, just so I can recall that event for a longer period. Sadly I'm in a hurry, so I cannot. Nowadays, I just stand in front of the shower trying to artificially recreate that moment, but the shower pours on me uniformly, in a given pattern with no turbulence, and no one laughing at me for my inability to swim. Then I hope for another day when it'll rain and I'll get splashed by an inanimate object to revive those familial bonds.
Storms don't like me, unfortunately. They take me to a dark place where I don't like to travel. My umbrella is my best friend in the rain, but it is scared of the storm. That's why it has abandoned me in a number of occasions, bending its shape to the direction of the wind and even flying away. The umbrella reminds me of a certain someone who left me at a crucial part of my life. We were best friends. Sharing lunches, beating up juniors, no one could separate us. But a chemistry exam changed all that. That was my personal storm back then; I hadn't studied anything and I thought my friend would just help me cheat. I was so wrong. To this day I don't know why he didn't let me see his exam script. Had he suddenly become the moral police? Unlikely. Maybe the winds were too strong for him back then, maybe it was so strong that he got disfigured too. Just like my umbrella.
When my umbrella leaves me, I just soak in the rain and come home dripping wet. Most often than not, when I press my palm against my forehead, I feel that familiar warmth. A warmth my mother would be so worried about. She would paradoxically pour more water on my head to reduce the fever, and console me by saying, “Jaa aro bhije ayy, doctor er poysha to tui dibi!” Now, people only pour bills and responsibilities on top of my head. Finally after all that, I get the most profound sensation after coming home, an urge that is impossible to ignore — I need to pee.
Shoaib Ahmed Sayam tortures himself by watching fake sports and Vietnamese cartoons. Send help at: fb.com/ooribabamama