(previous Blogger post, September 12, 2006, Tuesday)

The sun is shining brightly right now, but I can’t help but wish for the rain. Aside from the cooler temperature it brings, I find some strange comfort in the rain. I’ve realized that some of the best and worst moments in my life have been marked with rain. I’ve been deliriously happy while standing on a rice field, taking shelter under a pouring rain. I’ve stood at an airport terminal with a sinking feeling in my stomach while the rain prevented what could have been a better goodbye. Then there are the countless times dashing through sudden downpour with different friends. For some reason, I actually do enjoy that. There have been many more good and bad times I’ve associated with rain, but I can’t remember all the details anymore. All I know is that I get that strange but wonderful feeling in my stomach every time it rains. A mixture of the sad and happy. Bittersweet.

Some may think I’m crazy to love the rain. I could name several friends who absolutely hate it when it rains. I used to be one of those people, but things change you know. I live in a third-world country where the rain is not always pretty. I know, I know, how do you a define a pretty and ugly rain? It depends on how the surroundings look, and how you actually view them. You could be standing on a puddle or wading through flashflood but if you really want to, you could still find some beauty in it. I don’t know how, but I believe that somewhere out there, a person has found it. You could also be in a beautiful place where the rain made the pavements shine, and the rooftops sparkle, and the leaves and the grass more vibrant – yet never notice it because of the worldly concerns in your head. All you care about is how you’re late for a meeting, or how the rain ruined your outfit. Such a pity. We rarely get such natural beauty for free.

On the other end of the spectrum, I know that rains also bring tragedy to the less fortunate who get flooded, whose homes are damaged or destroyed, whose lives are displaced. We cannot ignore that. I guess the only thing we can do aside from helping them is not complaining about – or at least not much – whatever minor disruptions that rains cause.

One of the most beautiful things I’ve seen after a downpour is the sunshine that comes after it. Maybe it’s just me, but the sun seems brighter, lighter after the rain. A life metaphor.

Let me end this with the lyrics of my favorite Basil Valdez/Ryan Cayabyab song (and this post’s title):

Pagmasdan ang ulan, unti-unting pumapatak
sa mga halama’t mga bulaklak
Pagmasdan ang dilim unti-unting bumabalot
sa buong paligid tuwing umuulan

Kasabay ng ulan, bumubuhos ang ‘yong ganda
kasabay rin ng hanging kumakanta
Ma’ri bang huwag ka nang sa piling ko’y lumisan pa
hanggang ang hangi’t ula’y tumila na

Buhos na ulan aking mundo’y lunuring tuluyan
Tulad ng pag-agos mo ‘di mapipigil
ang puso kong nagliliyab
Pag-ibig ko’y umaapaw damdamin ko’y humihiyaw sa tuwa
tuwing umuulan at kapiling ka

Pagmasdan ang ulan, unti-unting tumitila,
ikaw ri’y magpapaalam na
Maari bang minsan pa, mahagkan ka’t maiduyan pa
Sakbibi ka’t ulan lamang ang saksi

Minsan pa ulan bumuhos ka’t h’wag nang tumigil pa
Hatid mo ma’y bagyo dalangin ito ng puso kong sumasamo
Pag-ibig ko’y umaapaw damdamin ko’y humihiyaw sa tuwa
tuwing umuulan at kapiling ka