A few years ago I discovered there is a word for people like me who love the rain.
And no, the word is not weirdo.
A note of caution – I saw the definition of pluviophile on Twitter and can’t be sure it has been given the Oxford dictionary stamp of approval.
But I’m assured it means “a lover of rain; someone who finds joy and peace of mind during rainy days.”.
For us pluviophiles, the Scottish weather has provided many moments of joy in recent weeks.
Of course, there’s less peace of mind if you’re caught out in it, or if you have experienced flooding, or have just spent £60 on a cut and blow dry.
During the weekend’s deluge I made the mistake of going into town.
Like a chubby Jason Bourne, I raced against the clock to find a dry place of refuge before my paper Primark bag disintegrated.
Mishaps aside, there is something immensely comforting about a fierce downpour.
Rain – the gardener’s friend
And useful if you happen to have reached the stage in life when “Ah but it’s good for the garden” has been absorbed into your vocabulary.
I hate watering the garden. Every year, I buy new bedding plants with the intention of keeping them alive for the entire summer.
I manage the nightly ritual for a few weeks.
I unstick the snails from the watering can and place them down carefully in whatever safe place my daughter has chosen for their new home.
I fill the silly watering can. I water the silly plants. And I resent every second of it.
I’m already responsible for keeping myself, my daughter and Brian the hamster alive.
I don’t have the emotional bandwidth to rear geraniums as well.
When the rain comes, I know that, for today at least, they will drink and be merry.
Rain days and Sundays
Of all the happy feelings – love, contentment, gratitude, joy – nothing tops being cosy.
On Sunday, when the heavens opened and the thunder rumbled, I turned on the fairy lights, lit all the candles and watched the rain dance in the newly-formed puddles.
For a while, anyway.
My seven year old has her limits and I’m not permitted to sit by the window and pretend I’m starring in a music video for any longer than 10 minutes.
This weather has also been good for those of us harbouring a dirty secret – that we miss lockdown a wee bit.
In these hedonistic days of “beyond level zero’’ it’s close to blasphemy to admit you don’t want to go out, let alone OUT-out.
The rain gives us permission to hunker down again for a while.
Rain, unlike Covid, is a passing thing
It gives us reason to clear an over-full social calendar and put off all non-essential commitments that involve the outdoors.
We know that, unlike lockdown, this biblical weather will pass relatively quickly.
So while we’ve got this little rain-soaked block of time, we might as well enjoy the cosiness and comfort that it brings.
I'm quite content to stay home with a sharebag of beef hula hoops and a bucket of tea tonight but I hope everybody hitting the clubs has a brilliant time. Happy for youse x
— Kirsty Strickland (@KirstyStricklan) August 9, 2021
My daughter joined a theatre club last week. She loves music and certainly has a flair for the dramatic, so I was sure it would be time well spent.
On her first day, she told me she had formed a “gang’’.
Each member picked an alias and she said she was “probably’’ the leader.
Not for the first time, I’m worried she’ll soon have her eye on a political career and I’ll be obliged to stop swearing so much on Twitter.
Everybody knows if you don’t talk to the taxi driver about the weather you risk ripping a hole in the space-time continuum
Still, on the way to pick her up, I chatted to the taxi driver about the weather.
(Because everybody knows if you don’t talk to the taxi driver about the weather you risk ripping a hole in the space-time continuum.)
I know it’s a lazy stereotype that taxi drivers like to moan, but I was surprised when this one said he didn’t mind the rain either.
Scotttish weather is boring, he told me, and we should be grateful for it.
Trust a taxi driver to talk sense
I hadn’t thought of it like that before, but it’s true, isn’t it?
Our weather is neither up nor down. Our heatwaves and snowstorms are fleeting.
Sometimes it’s windy enough to send a trampoline down the road, but we’ve no hurricanes, no tsunamis, no proper earthquakes.
It’s a reminder that climate change is no longer a looming threat. It’s here and now and we should probably enjoy our boring weather while it lasts.
And for now that means making the most of life beyond level zero.
Social distancing is behind us and the world beyond our front doors is there for the taking.
Major climate changes inevitable and irreversible – IPCC’s starkest warning yet https://t.co/GPIbVxhfYx
— The Guardian (@guardian) August 9, 2021
By day, parks and sporting events are thronging with people again.
After dark, the night-time industry is back in business and clubs are back open.
If you want to, you can dance the night away and kiss a handsome stranger by the glow of the DJ box strobe lights.
Or you could just get cosy on the couch and wait for the rain to pass.