Between a Rock & a Raindrop – Vancouver’s Love/Hate Relationship with Rain

Flickr Dani V

Photo: Flickr Dani V

When’s the last time you complained about the rain? We all do it. Vancouver averages 1117.2 mm or 43.98 inches of rain a year. That’s a lot of water and a lot of fodder for those who enjoy moaning about our wet winters. Personally, I appreciate a brisk walk in the rain. During a recent weather event, I ventured along Kitsilano Beach and took a moment to stop and read the story stone near Kits Point. The words of Regan D’Andrade are etched in the rock and serve to remind us all that the shades of gray bring us beauty.

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Vancouver in the Rain by Regan D’Andrade, Photo: R. Weiss

“Vancouver is famous for its rain. It can rain here for weeks on end, but it does not usually bother me. However, several years ago I found myself coming close to being thoroughly disgusted by the rain.

I walked home from work one evening in the pouring rain, mumbling under my breath the whole way that this weather was only suited to ducks. The building I lived in was large and square, and it surrounded a brick courtyard. I came around the corner into the courtyard and there, to my amazement was a beautiful Peking duck in a huge puddle in the middle of the courtyard, quacking and splashing with obvious delight. I had to smile, glad that such joy could be found in the gray wetness of such a day.

I have often thought that we do not have nearly enough words for rain, especially as this was once a rainforest. There is booming rain, whispery rain, rain that lulls you to sleep, and rain on the leaves which sings you awake; there is soft rain, hard rain, sideways rain, rain that makes you instantly wet, and rain that leaves soft kisses on your cheek, like the wings of a butterfly.

Rain brings us all the shades of gray, but it also brings us the wonderful greenery that surrounds us and blesses us all.”

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Photo: R. Weiss

As I read the words on the stone, it occurred to me that rain touches us and inspires us. It feeds our lush forests, fills our water reservoirs and cleanses our souls. Thunderstorms thrill us and rainbows delight us. The constant rhythm fascinates. Vancouver takes on a mystical quality when the wispy clouds touch the skyscrapers. City sounds are muffled and the air smells fresher. And with each and every raindrop comes hope. Hope that winter will soon be over and that it won’t be long before spring flowers and blossoms paint the town. Before you know it, you see your first snowdrop pushing up from the ground and you are reminded that all is right with the world. Maybe Vivian Greene said it best, “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”

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4 Responses to Between a Rock & a Raindrop – Vancouver’s Love/Hate Relationship with Rain

  1. Cheryl

    Love your blog–and I personally love the rain–I used to especially LOVE to run in the rain–now I must only walk due to a bad knee–but I love it. Love your blog too–good for you for finding the beauty and intricate details in our fair city:))

    • Jane Weiss

      Thanks Cheryl!

  2. Liliya

    l love Vancouver

    • Jane Weiss

      Great to hear Liliya! Do you have a favourite rainy day walk?