As gondola operators we love it. We row on it, wouldn't be in business without it, and are quite accustomed to its various moods and methods.
Sometimes it splashes into our boats.
Sometimes it tries to sneak between the planking to find a resting place in the bilge.
Then there are days when water simply falls from the sky – sometimes in sheets. Today was one of those days for us in Southern California. I awoke this morning to hear the rumble of thunder - something we don't hear often in this area. The tap-tap-tapping of rain gave way to a showering sound as I watched the world outside my window get a washdown. The distant thunder was soon replaced by the loud "CRACK" one hears when the storm is right overhead. Flashes of light were immediately followed by thunderous crashes as the rain dumped on my roof.
As is always the case with rain, I immediately thought about my gondolas and how they:
a. were all due for a good washing
b. ought to have functioning bilge pumps right about now, but
c. would need to be checked on anyway - Murphy and his law are not to be second-guessed.
After an acceptable amount of procrastination (that means letting most of the day go by), I made my way to the docks to do what always needs to be done when the rains come:
spend some quality time with a shop-vac - hitting all the places my bilge pumps miss, taking note of any maintenance I might need to be tending to as a result of the rain, and swearing a little under my breath when nobody’s around, as invariably, the rain will find its way into my underwear.
The work was there, waiting for me to do it.
No less than advertised, and I went at it with the same vigor and frustration I always do – knowing that it’s part of the whole package. We revel in the sunset cruises, the surprise proposals, and all the other stuff that is “worthy of writing home about”, but you’ve got to pay your dues along the way as well. With a fleet of gondolas to care for, I wasn’t halfway through before my pants were soaked. The rain found its way into my socks too, which ended up bunched-up in the toes of my boots. In the end I managed to accomplish everything I’d set out to do and walked off the dock soggy but satisfied, knowing there were warm, dry clothes at home.
And yes, the rain made it once again to my underwear – and I wore it like a badge of honor!
I've noticed that rain seems to bring out a certain mood in me, which can be captured in some of the previous writings I've done here on the Gondola Blog:
Getting Sentimental on a Rainy Day
Mid-Winter Post-Precipitation Activity - has some fun video clips
and of course, Rain