Bitching Brew

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Beneath the willows.

People don't take enough time out in this city. The hectic pace of work hours seems to continue through the rest of the day and week. I suppose business and busyness are close cousins; thus by escaping from one, I hope to moderate the other. (I'll speak of that soon enough.)

On Charlemont Street Monday evening, my cheek winced at the light tap of a raindrop. I've taken to walking this way recently, as it lets me stroll a short stretch of the Grand Canal (sometimes Gross Gutter), a prettier route than my old haunt of South Richmond Street.

On a bright summer evening, taking the south bank is a pleasure, as the sunlight warms my face and my mood. That time, the increasing patter and stacks of grey cloud signalled a full downpour was imminent. Thus I decided to walk the north bank, hoping to shelter beneath the willow trees that curve across the canal, protecting the old tow path. When the sky cracked a minute later, the rain came down in torrents. People scuttled for cover... yet hardly anyone made use of these beautiful natural umbrellas. Even the few that did got frustrated after little more than five minutes, and decided to brave the rain in order to get moving. I was alone in waiting out the storm for twenty minutes. It didn't feel like lost time; instead, I quite enjoyed watching the strange habits of people in rain. For instance, two lads in their twenties emerged from the flats behind the canal with fishing lines. They explained that the height of a storm is one of the best times to catch fish. I'm still a little sceptical, as they reeled in only junk and weeds.

When the rain cleared and sunlight returned, I naturally moved off. Despite the drips of rain that made their way through my cover, I'm quite pleased I was caught outdoors in the downpour. It was a thoroughly enjoyable wait beneath the willows. More and more, I'm learning to appreciate the trees in my neighbourhood.

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