Forgive the puerile wordplay of this post’s title but its supposedly raining today in the city and the only thing I can think of is how pathetic rainy days are here. Where I come from, when it rains it rains. Sheets of water come cascading down from the sky with determined trajectories as strong winds are unable to deter them from their soaking course. Florida rain is a good rain, where the water falls straight down, or perhaps at a slight angle. You can watch it as it falls, and there usually isn’t anything better to do. Great puddles are formed from even the tiniest of storms, and with the proper deluge entire parking lots become wading pools. That’s not even mentioning the pyrotechnic lightning effects and the gale-force winds that temporarily twist and warp oak trees as they wreak their havoc.
In San Francisco the rain is nowhere near as aesthetically pleasing. It doesn’t even truly rain. The best the City by the Bay can offer is a drizzle, a sprinkle. I never even get to see it. I look out my window on an overcast day, and suddenly the streets are wet. If I didn’t know better I would suspect someone just comes out and sprays the city down with a particularly large water hose when no one is paying attention. What San Franciscans laughingly refer to as “rain” is little more than a mist that seems to blow with the wind horizontally, rather than true gravity-obeying, downward-falling precipitation. It renders umbrellas virtually useless, and never quite soaks you fully. The skies don’t even get properly dark, merely a a tired gray as Gibson said, “the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.” It leaves you damp. It leaves you tired. It leaves you missing home.