When we moved to Portland in 1993 it was February and raining as we pulled our moving truck into the driveway of our dark and dreary rental house. It didn't stop raining for months. I consoled myself with the idea that we didn't have to live here forever. The first winter was the worst. Once we moved into our own house that had big windows and a more expansive feel we didn't feel quite so trapped in gloom when it rained, but I still had places, like Idaho and Ashland, where we had lived, and where the winters were cold, but often sunny and bright as a goal for the future. But slowly we became Portlanders, rain and all and I can't imagine living anywhere else now.
While other places tolerate rain, even welcome rain after long dry periods, in Portland the rain is a lifestyle. We embrace the gifts it provides in the form of gardens and flowers and a green that must be seen to be believed, that covers our hills and parks and riverbanks.
We dress for the rain. I find myself assessing shoe purchases in terms of how they might survive the rain and whether that cute cut-out design is going to result in wet socks. There is a reason the largest bookstore in the country is here in Portland. We read. We go to movies and plays and concerts. We meet in coffee shops, where there is a handy bucket for your wet umbrella as you come in the door. Do you know coffee tastes way better on a rainy day? Do you know a car radio (NPR, most likely) sounds just right accompanied by the swish of windshield wipers? Walks in the rain, providing you have good shoes and a waterproof jacket, can be lovely. The sound of rain on the roof at night, and a warm quilt, are the combination that provides the deepest, most restful sleep.
So the rain is back, and just like that summer is over. I could have waited a few more weeks. Summer seemed pretty short, but we could get a warm, dry break later in the fall. I washed the quilts, so they are ready for cool evenings and today I got out the crockpot.
My blog friend, Joanne, in Maine wrote that she cooked a pot roast today too. I wonder if it's raining there.