I woke up to a misty morning, and the hint of a feathery drizzle today. I had to really squint to see it, when the husband pointed it out, and even then I wasn’t sure I was seeing the rain. Yes folks, its the 1st of November, and we’re slowly but surely pushing in on winter.
So while our friends in Chennai are dealing with wind speeds of over 80 kmph, incessant rain and trees being uprooted like frail twigs stuck in the ground, and Sandy has come and done her thing on the far side of the globe, I’m going to ask one more time: just what the hell is going on with this planet?
Things have been teetering on apeshit for a while now. Right here in Goa, the super-weird monsoon we had this year, went off like someone pulled the plug on the rain. One fine day, just like that. Boom. And it was all over. None of the usual lingering, tantalizing, waning drizzly days. No lush green turning to a bright yellow. No signs of the city slowly coming back to life. It was like nothing had changed. The rain this year, was so sporadic and like it was doing us a favour by being there at all, that I guess people learned to live with it. And without it too. But nothing prepared me for the bitch that was October. Giving into this level of heat was one of the strangest things I have experienced in my time here.
For three years I was warned about the dreaded October Heat. “It’s worse than the summer,” I was told. And yet somehow I never faced it. The first year it rained right through till the end of November. The second year, winter jumpstarted ahead of time and we had weirdly foggy mornings and no oppressive heat to speak of. So when the heat wave began and people cowered indoors, I found myself feeling all Meh about it. Only until I actually felt the heat myself. In the thick of cafe duty, when I felt like I was in a sauna and my tee shirt told a tale to match, I knew what they were talking about.
Being under the fans at home had stopped having any effect. Wearing a bra had become near impossible. I felt like it would stifle me in and make me melt inwards. The AC stayed at a nippy 22 degrees every night this past month and I found myself kicking the husband off every time he’d do his customary sleep-snuggle. Skin-on-skin in the heat is the worst, for the record. There should be a rule about it.
So here I was dealing with the most oppressive heat wave I have seen in the last three years, and in between which I even got the flu. Burning up in the heat? Not so much fun. One day ManaDee sent me a message that really had me turn a vile shade of green. I believe she used the words “It’s 16 degrees in Bangalore. What the eff to they think of themselves?” and she might have mentioned that a certain part of her anatomy was on the verge of turning blue. The only response I had was to tell her that certain parts of my anatomy bear the risk of being baked to a crisp. I even channeled by weather-related frustration twitter-wards with random rants about how whoever invented the bra has not visited coastal India in October and had not considered the possibility of death by bra. It is a very real and plausible condition, guys. Do not underestimate the power of October Heat like I did.
Now, I hear tales of unabating rain, of grey skies and windy outdoors, from Bangalore. Really, just kill me somebody. For the last three days it has felt like everybody is either having crazy tumultuous weather, or the wonderful fringe-effects of cyclonic weather, which brings light rain and no sunlight. Why then, were we being subjected to this insane heat?
As if I hadn’t ranted enough on twitter and in person, I went to bed one night, kicking off the covers and swearing to God that the next home we move to will not have a west-facing bedroom, and will certainly not be a top floor apartment with a scalding rooftop. Muttering under my breath, at some point I drifted asleep. And when I woke up the next day, it was chilly.
No, really. Right on cue, something switched again. There was a cool breeze, a nip in the air and suddenly it felt like the beginnings of a gorgeous day. Sometimes sunrise does tricky things, so I waited for it to blow over and the sun to come out.
Yesterday was the nicest day in all of October. I felt refreshed to be outdoors. I didn’t need the AC in the car or my cat-shades on my face. And I didn’t feel like my bra was out to kill me. Today, I’m sitting here, sans fan.
I think our share of winter is here. It might not ever drop down to the single digits like it does in some parts of the country, but when we stop sweating our asses off, even for a few days, I’m willing to suck it up and enjoy it while it lasts. This is as much of the cool weather as we’re going to get and I might already be mildly addicted to wintery chai. I find myself throwing in a piece of battered ginger and a crushed cardamom into my tea every evening, and I have pulled out my jacket to air it out in time.
I have a strange affinity for music and weather. They go together. Rain song, summer song, sunny beach song, cold wintery night song, misty morning song. Waking up today, I knew it was time for this:
So whatever the weather might be like in your neck of the woods, I suggest you snuggle up with a pot of your favourite beverage and pray that the weather really starts to behave like its good old predictable self again. And here’s a wintery song to keep you company. Ironically, its called In the sun.