Rain,rain, you may come today!
Rain, rain, don’t go away; Come again, another day.
Rain, rain, don’t go away; We Buhbajans want to play!
These past two weekends have not been without their whopping share of anxiety. Glistening forked lightning in muted sunlight, followed by thunderous applause from the heavens, can be unnerving for most people.
Yet, such inclement weather was not surprising. It had been well forecast; it was, as you may say, long in coming.
Planned at their peril were outdoor games, like cricket and football, and social occasions like the Saturday grounds fair or the community street gathering. Everything else pretty much survived the deluge and thunderstorms. The scintillating City Nights Aturo Tappin jazz offerings at Frank Collymore Hall would neither be rained out or cancelled, and boasted full house both weekend nights.
In a way, it proved that if you put your mind to it, the torrential showers outside your window need not stifle your leisure plans for the day –– or night.
With the stormy conditions these last two weekends, it would not have been unlikely to see Barbados come to a standstill, even though this kind of weather at this time of the year is not a novelty to the island. Instead, Barbadians –– except those suffering a few anxious moments with the zigzagging zapping lightning –– were taking things in stride.
Maybe, having not experienced for some time such widespread severity of weather as had been promised for weeks now –– barring the short bouts in exclusive spots –– there had been bred a kind of nonchalance.
Whatever it was, it engendered a business-as-usual approach to social and other events that, we daresay, augurs well for the future. The time was when once there was a lingering downpour, flooding was the excuse to cancel all events: schools closed, or did not open at all; the churches postponed worshipping their Lord; workplaces cringed at the absenteeism –– and on and on. Barbados simply went to bed.
Now, the thrill of a blanket light grey of rain cascading and cooling a torrid or uncomfortably humid day could be taking the place of the frustration of people struggling to get to work or play; schoolchildren stuck in the classroom, or told not to bother to come, depending on the time of day; cars stalled in floodwaters.
There has been a decrease in the very last scenario these days, thanks to Dr Dennis Lowe’s Water Drainage Unit, whose members have been doing a commendable –– but thankless –- job across this island of obviating many a blocked drain and the like.
Fortunately, so far, we have foregone hurricanes, in a period that had been predicted to be quite busy and intense, and have settled for the manageable thunderstorms. And if we were ambushed by them, it is because we were paying little attention to them and their coming as forecast by the Met Office. That the forecasters of the Metereological Services may not be spot-on on the hour of day is no good or sensible reason to dimiss them.
The rain in many ways is a glorious blessing. It is cause for the water we drink; it waters the plants and food we eat; it washes away some of our sins (litter here and there); and it cools our sweating brows by which we eat our daily bread.
It is good to know that we Barbadians are enjoying the rain’s wonder, and making every effort to get to work and to play through it, to boot!