Home Reflections Nostalgic Memories of Rain

Nostalgic Memories of Rain

by Vidya Sury June 24, 2016 29 comments
Rain drops keep falling on my head. Vidya Sury

There’s something so satisfyingly special about watching the rain from indoors. Warm, cozy, safe, and with a big mug of steaming filter coffee, while the water drizzles or lashes haphazardly, humoring the wind, loitering around with it, playing with it as it drenches everything in its wake. The scent of the rain hitting the earth, oh! One can practically hear the plants perking up and getting ready for the treat!

Raindrops are the perfect lullaby!

During my childhood, our house had tall windows with wide ledges where one could place a few cushions, lean back, watch the world go by, or get lost in one’s own world with a book. I have sweet memories of yearning to go walk outside in the rain, wearing a raincoat and gumboots.

Rain boy in red and black jacket and black knit cap running on wet road during daytime

Oh, how badly I wanted those gum boots! I’d feel envious of all the other kids at school wearing them over their school shoes. I never got a pair… we lived too close to my school to warrant buying them and our family was not into indulging in unnecessary expense.

We lived in a large house and our hearts were large, but our savings or income were quite lean. However, we did believe in buying good quality. For example, raincoats, so they would last the longest time. My clothes were always a size too large so they would continue to fit as I grew up.

I had a pink raincoat with a flower print that I still remember clearly. I would be so careful not to get it wet, which, come to think of it is a bit weird eh?

Rain is good for the soul

When I was in the 7th grade, we moved cities and lived in a charming area where most houses had tiled roofs. The first rain there was so amusing! Various parts of the roof leaked and soon, we had containers of different sizes positioned in the appropriate areas on the floor to catch the water. You’d think we’d have it repaired right away, but since it was a rental, the house owner didn’t consider it very important. He simply smiled and said his own house was in the same condition!

Oddly enough, none of these things bothered us! We were just thrilled to see our little garden patch flourishing, with the creepers climbing over the roof from the backyard, all the way to dangle over the front of the house!

Rain, rain, don’t go away!

Over the years, I developed a great relationship with rain. There was this Saturday when I was in the 8th grade. School closed at 1 pm and just as we set out, the rain gods were out in full force. Visibility was low. I waited till about 3 pm but hunger drove me homeward. It was a 20-minute walk. The idea of splish-splashing my way home was very appealing. I managed to find a large plastic cover in which I packed my school bag. It was one of those thick canvas bags and definitely not waterproof.

I also packed my shoes in the upper layer as I didn’t want those white shoes to become wet and dirty. Which meant I was all set to barefoot it home. That was a walk to remember. The torrential rain brought many critters out of their hiding places and I practically skipped home, just a little scared.

What was funny was the house we lived in at the time. We had moved in a month earlier and found that the house flooded when the rains started! Of course, we moved pronto! But only after we enjoyed a few rounds of hot savory snacks!

No rainbow without the rain!

In the late eighties, the “house” Mom and I lived in – really a room next to the garage of a bungalow – was the cheapest place we could find. We thought nothing of the way the ground sloped from the main gate to the entrance of our little room, until the rains started. And when it did, our room had more stagnant water than outside our front door!

How did we tackle it? A friend of mine luckily dropped by and we actually built a little bund around the front door with a channel sloping away to another part of the compound. Oh, we used mugs to drain the water first. Some of it self-drained via the drain under the sink in the far end of the room. We learned not to keep anything on the floor after that. If we did, it had to have waterproof legs or sit on a stand.

Dancing in the rain

Much, much later in life, I have warm memories of huddling with a friend outside a shuttered shop to stay dry from a sudden summer shower. Running to a shop 2 kilometers away because one of my favorite kids in the block wanted a pillow. Going for a movie with my Mom when there was a storm, because we felt like. Waiting two hours for a friend to turn up. Driving in the rain. Walking on the terrace with my son enjoying the drizzle.

We have progressed to better apartments – but to this day, if there’s heavy rains, I still run and check all the windows to see if the water is pouring in!

And of course, I love to eat ice cream in the rain. And sing

Do you love the rain?


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Sunita June 25, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Lovely…Gene Kelly’s singin in the rain is reverberating in my ears..as i read this I am enjoying the mesmerizing monsoon in all its glory here in Bengaluru..

Vidya Sury June 26, 2016 at 10:32 pm

Hehe. That song does hang around in the head, doesn’t it, Sunita! Thank you!
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Cathy Graham June 25, 2016 at 5:44 pm

I enjoyed your post about the rains and your memories of rainy times growing up. The monsoons seem so different from here in Canada. We do get rainy times of year but nothing like the deluge you seem to get in India. I, too, don’t mind the rain and find it kind of fun if I’m dressed for it. I have been caught many times getting totally drenched and my feet soaked which isn’t that fun but I survived.

I especially like a good thunderstorm if I’m tucked away inside safe from the lightning. I remember when I was about 12, we had our trailer parked in the yard. My dad loved to go out there in thunderstorms. He claimed that the rubber tires would keep us safe from the lightning and out there we could really experience the storm to the fullest.

Flooding must have been a real drag for you. We’ve had the roof leak but the only time it flooded here was after an extra heavy winter of snowfall when the snow all melted quickly and water poured into the basement.

Might as well be like Gene Kelly and embrace the rain. And it’s a good thing. If we didn’t have it, we’d be in big trouble as many regions are finding when they experience long periods of drought.
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Vidya Sury June 26, 2016 at 10:32 pm

The freakiest thing is to get drenched while wearing socks and shoes, Cat! Hehehe. Some of my most fun moments have been in heavy rains – I always manage to get caught in them! You know, when we lived in Hyderabad, we were always amused to see people calmly wear a large plastic sheet over their heads when it rained. Nothing seemed to bother them. So much fun to enjoy the rain when the weather is warm sometimes! Very refreshing. I love that Gene Kelly song, Cat. Rain is always cause for celebration, except when there’s flooding. Thank you for being patient with the comments, Cat. Love you!
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Cathy Graham June 25, 2016 at 5:50 pm

How annoying! I left a comment but it doesn’t seem to be showing up. Watch! I’ll write this and it will show up later. Always happens.

I enjoyed your rain post. The monsoons must be quite the event with such a deluge of rain. We don’t have that kind of thing in Canada really but our rainstorms can vary from a gentle sprinkle to a deluge. Certain times of year are rainier than others.

I like the rain and like a good thunderstorm if I’m safe inside away from the lightning.

We should all be like Gene Kelly and embrace the rain. All part of the cycle of life and desperately needed, too.

Must have been a drag with all that leaking and flooding you had growing up but you took it all in good stride.

An enjoyable read and I felt the rain gushing down on me, too.

Rachna Parmar June 25, 2016 at 7:45 pm

Such beautiful memories, Vids. I have lived a large part of my life in Bombay. I actually feel in love with the rains there. Having hit corn on the cob, watching the grey sea, l could watch for hours. Also how quickly it came on. Of course Bangalore is also beautiful in rains. The green around me turns even more pretty. Of course chai and pakode complement it well.

Vidya Sury June 25, 2016 at 8:00 pm

I’ve lived in equal parts in Bombay and Hyderabad, some Madras and now Bangalore, Rachna. Ah, I’ll never forget running out in the pouring rain to buy that pack of diapers when Vidur was a baby! I was so nervous that water would somehow seep in and use up all the diapers! I’ve had some solid BFF times with rain. Our flat looked out into the sea and it was fabulous seeing the color of the water keep changing. Pakode..yum! yes! Masala chai too!
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Parul June 26, 2016 at 2:12 pm

I love when it rains. Having a hot cup of ginger tea but some snack is my favorite monsoon thing. I get too distracted when it rains so if I have to read, I prefer staying indoors and not in the balcony where I can watch it rain. 🙂
What a lovely post, Vidya. Many memories and such lovely times.
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Vidya Sury June 26, 2016 at 10:27 pm

Thank you Parul! Yes, you’re right. I love holding a book and watching the rain, too. I have lovely memories of long discussions at home about what to make – when we were a joint family during my childhood. One uncle would say pakoda, and one would insist on bajji – and another uncle would simply get right down to making it. Everyone was so enthusiastic about doing things together. Hugs!
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Kala Ravi June 27, 2016 at 10:32 am

Well, I am humming ‘Raindrops are fallin’ on my head’ while typing this….and it is pouring buckets outside! I am a pluviophile too! I love everything about the rains, I am overall a nice person to be with all through the monsoons! The sound of raindrops pelting on the roof (I live in a terrace flat) and the windows, is so comforting, I even have a recording of it! And getting wet in the rains is something I follow as a matter of ritual, one that I have faithfully passed on to my kids too! My son never carries a raincoat or umbrella to school and instead ensures his books are water-proofed inside his school-bag! He comes home drenched, perfectly and deliriously happy and I don’t want to deny him this absolute childish pleasure! Loved reading about your rainy experiences Vidya, may the rain-Gods bless you with lots of happy showers that make such beautiful, lingering memories!
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:14 pm

Kala, that’s exactly what I titled this post… and then, somehow changed it. Now I have that song back in my head! Give your son a tight hug from me! As much as I love being in the rain, I love to see kids enjoying themselves too. And kudos to him for keeping his books safe! Hugs!
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Jaibala Rao June 27, 2016 at 10:34 am

Ah Rains! The only time I love my City is during the rains. So much fun, so many memories past present and Future. I know S enjoys the rains as much as I do, and these days I see me in him.

Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:15 pm

How lovely! I was born in that city, Jaibala, and love how people go about their business as usual in the torrential rain! Thank you so much for coming by. Hugs to your son!
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Raj Lakshmi June 27, 2016 at 1:14 pm

I loved how warmly you recalled those memories… it must have been a testing time to handle mini floods and leaking roofs. Beautiful post.. I remember we too had a leaking roof one monsoon season and there were all size of buckets placed in living room… Adventure for a kid but my parents were losingtheir mind… I love the rain 🙂 accompanied by garam chai and samosa.
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:17 pm

Right now I want a garam chai and samosa! Gosh I love samosas and cannot eat them! It is wonderful how inconvenience for adults turn out to be fun for kids! Loved your post about living away from home!
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Nabanita June 27, 2016 at 1:35 pm

I really enjoyed this post, Vidya.. I’m not to fond of rains but you almost made me fall in love with everything that has got to do with the showers ! Only you could have done that 🙂
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:18 pm

Hehe.. I love life, Naba. Simple as that. Easy to enjoy everything when we put it under the blanket of love! Thank you for your sweet comment!
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upasna June 27, 2016 at 5:08 pm

I wonder Mam, you remember the details even after so many years. My past memory is not so strong. Sometimes, there are faded memories and I try focusing hard to see a clear picture but at the end, I quit. But yes, Rains are so good and I enjoyed them in my childhood. Making paper boats, getting drenched and enjoying listening songs are the memories etched in my heart and I can certainly say Rains are good for soul because mere thought of those memories bring a smile on my face.
I also remember roof leaking in the Monsoons while our House was getting renovated. Its also a part of those beautiful memories.
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:20 pm

Upasna, I think as we grow older we remember a lot of things in detail from a few years ago. Maybe I’ve forgotten where I put my glasses 5 minutes ago! And while I look for it, it is probably sitting on my head! Hehehe. I remember feeling sad when my paperboat would get totally drenched and drown! Yes, rains bring lovely memories! Thank you for visiting!
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Sara June 27, 2016 at 7:04 pm

What a lovely post Vidya,I wanted to read on and on until I realized it was over!!

Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:12 pm

What a beautiful thing to say, Sara! Thank you!
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Vinitha June 27, 2016 at 9:12 pm

Beautiful read, Vidya. Who doesn’t love rain, right? But I am not liking the rain here in England. The rain here behaves like an uninvited guest I feel. But still, I enjoy a walk in the rain. 🙂
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:21 pm

Thank you Vinitha. Yes I’ve heard about the unruly weather there! Best time is when it is a drizzle!
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Shailaja Vishwanath June 28, 2016 at 7:53 am

That song is one of my absolute favourites! I can sing it any time 😀

As for the rains, I admire your child-like enthusiasm for it. Also, I echo Naba with regard to rains 😀

The only time I love getting wet in the rain is when I am in the pool, swimming. Every other time I need to curl up with a sweater, a warm cup of tea and watch it coming down outside my windows 🙂
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:11 pm

I can just picture you all bundled up with your cup of green tea. Hehehe. Now, when are you going to sing that song to me, mmm? Hugs!
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Darla M Sands June 29, 2016 at 11:36 pm

My back porch is covered by a tin roof and I absolutely adore sitting out there during rainstorms and even when there is thunder and lightning. Depending on the situation, it’s either exhilarating or relaxing. I’m also known to grab an umbrella specifically to walk in the rain. The habit developed as a child and continues to this day. 🙂 Best wishes!
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Vidya Sury July 7, 2016 at 8:22 pm

Sounds exciting Darla! I’ve always yearned for a porch where I could sit and watch the rain, with coffee and a book and maybe even music! Right now we’ve got a balcony where our pigeons huddle 🙂 Hugs!
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Shilpa Gupte July 2, 2016 at 8:45 pm

Vidya…hey sweetie!
Oh, yes, I love the rains – provided I am sitting in the comforts of my home. Then I love looking at the waterfalls on the far away mountains and imagine I am living on some hill station! I even pray to the rain gods to keep blessing us with the rains, as much as possible!
I remember, the year after I got married..we lived in a rented apartment. the first rainy season in the house had us placing vessels on the living room sofa and chairs, to collect the water that dripped from the balcony above. And, one night, it rained so much, the water from the top floor balcony came pouring into the living room balcony, which got all choked up and the water then flooded our living room. The next morning, when I woke up and came downstairs, I stepped into a flooded room and found my MIL and SIl sleeping on the mattress which had now become an island! Good lord, the way we tried to sweep out the water and hang the wet mattress, and all that smell! Phew! Can never forget some moments! But, all in all, I love the rains…love to sit in a cozy corner by the window, with a steaming cup of coffee and a lovely book, look out of the window and enjoy the pitter-patter!
Cute post! <3

Vidya Sury July 3, 2016 at 5:42 pm

Whoa whoa! We’ve been through the inside floods many times and I can imagine a soaked mattress. Eeks! Why, the house we live in now – one window was open at night in the first month we were here, and it must have rained real heavy. When I woke up in the morning i got the shock of my life when I found myself ankle deep in water! First thing we did was seal off that window, which incidentally also brought in cooking smells 🙂 Coffee inside and rain outside sound good to me too! Hugs!
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