Over at 1000 Awesome Things I read a great post on the joy of getting caught in the rain and I couldn’t help but think of the day Terry and I got caught in the rain in Cancun last July.
It began as a drizzle, plinking on the marble that surrounded the pool. We were laying on one of those canopied poolside beds reading our books in the heavy summer air. I thought the rain would relieve the humidity, but Cancun still breathed down on us.
We didn’t care about the rain or the humidity. We relaxed and watched the drizzle become a steady rain. And then the steady rain broke open into a deluge. Never in my life have I seen rain like that! We set our open books on our stomachs and watched the rain fill the walkways.
Our canopy leaked, gently at first, a drop here, a drop there. And then the rain came in sheets, rivulets becoming pools where we sat. It soaked through our towels, our clothes, our books. It soaked through everything.
We watched others create makeshift umbrellas from towels and shirts as they ran for refuge at the thatched roof bars. But not us.
Terry and I have been caught in the rain on our bicycles and we’ve learned that there is a saturation point, a point at which clothing, hair, skin is so sodden with water that it simply cannot contain another drop. And we had reached that point. So there was only one reasonable thing to do.
We stripped down to our bathing suits and jumped in the pool.
We were the only two swimming as the rain pelted the surface of the pool, but did not touch our bodies underneath. We laughed and I kissed Terry, sucking the rain off his bottom lip. The pool water was so warm, warmer even than the sultry air.
After our swim we dashed back to our canopy, gathered up our wet things, and sat down at an umbrella covered table at an outdoor café. The waiters cowered in their white uniforms under the awnings, waiting for the downpour to stop. We giggled at the people dodging from awning to awning trying to stay dry.
But this rain allowed no survivors.
The water puddled up over ankles and the waiters used giant squeegees to usher the water from the marbled paths back into the flowerbeds over and over again. Men turned Coca Cola crates upside down and stood on them to save their leather shoes. Terry and I ate lunch, my wet hair dripping on the table.
We walked back to our room in the rain and my arms and legs prickled with goosebumps. Back in our room we sank into a hot bubble bath. This is the part of the story where I fast forward.
Later that night I toweled off my wet hair until it sprung up in huge soft curls around my face. No straight hair allowed in Cancun air. I wrapped myself in a bathrobe and Terry and I pulled out our books and read some more while the rain pattered a percussion on our patio.
The rain had soaked through all 560 pages of The Poisonwood Bible and the pages crinkled up into waves. Days later when all the pages were dry, the book was so fat with memories of the rain that it couldn’t even begin to close. That book will never be the same.
And neither will I.
I, too, am fat with memories of that blessed rainy day.