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granted, this time i think it’s my fault because i meant to leave the house about an hour and a half ago and then got caught up in all the magic of the world wide web (the most aptly named apparatus ever). and now i am sitting at my kitchen table staring out the window as it pours down, which i seem to do more and more, and thinking about how much money i’m saving by not going grocery shopping ever because it is always raining.

what i’ve learned from this is that you can’t really take a good photo of rain – or, rather, i can’t take a really good photo of rain. i think my mother should be very happy though. at the very least, she gets to say “i told you so”. my entire life, i’ve been complaining of living in southern california (i have no idea what is wrong with me); i have wished for snow and begged for rain. at one point, i tried to convince my parents to send me to a boarding school in switzerland. i’m not entirely sure that most of this didn’t come from the young fashionista in me, longing for coats, boots and umbrellas. now that i have all that i ever wished for, however, i can honestly say that i was mistaken.

i think i thought that you would be able to choose your options – i’ll take rain from 12:00 – 2:00 and some evenings and snow for three days: christmas eve, christmas day and boxing day, for example. this turns out not to be the case. in fact, at least this “summer”, it seems to just rain and rain and rain with no thought as to whether or not it’s a good time for me.

sometimes, it’s fun. yesterday i got caught in the rain out on my run and as a southern californian (and a new runner), this had never happened to me before so i, of course, frolicked. i found myself dancing even more obviously to my ipod and throwing in random leaps and skips. i was probably talking to myself or singing to myself as well. luckily, everyone else here seems to have gotten the rain schedule (maybe they give it out at the beginning of the year and we weren’t here yet?), so there were no witnesses about.

just when it started - you can sort of see that i'm wet

even the animals were hiding:

one of the horsies hiding under a tree

the deer darted out of a tree and under cover















and other times, it’s only fun because of what you do while you are trying to avoid it. this past weekend, one of my new thursday lunch/wine buddies (last week, janet and i had a repeat drunken lunch after the morning coffee and this time we brought along a new girl, karen) had told me that there was a street festival going on in deutz. i think that here they have neighborhood festivals like they do in spain, though i knew that what we were going to was in no way going to rival the festa major de gràcia (which i shall write about soon). as we have talked about moving to this area of town, we figured we should cycle there to see how long it would take james to get to work (about 40 minutes in the end), and just because it’s fun. it took us a little over an hour to get into town and although it had been sprinkling when we started out (we should have been warned), it was a nice, easy ride.

of course, just as we got into town, it started raining. we thought we’d stop off in a café, have a drink or some “threesies”, as james says, and were just trying to think of the best place to go when it began to pour and i do mean buckets. we made it to the safety of a bridge and thought we’d wait it out.

again, can't really see the rain because as i mentioned, i can't seem to get a picture of it (sneaky, sneaky rain...)

after about twenty minutes or so of non-stop rain, we were starting to get bored. though we did see an old lady get drenched and muddied from the spray of a passing bus, which was pretty funny (luckily, she thought so as well). we decided to make a break for it and run to this mexican restaurant we had eaten in when we were visiting cologne over a year ago (the sun shone the entire trip and it was hot and gorgeous – false advertising, apparently). james tried to ride his bike and hold his umbrella at the same time, which probably ensured that he got wetter than i did, while i walked my bike with my umbrella. i should point out that james didn’t want to bring his umbrella in the first place and would have left it at home, had i not ignored him and brought it anyway.

we holed up at the mexican restaurant and waited it out. the food wasn’t bad – it wasn’t great, but it’s the best mexican food i’ve found here so far (just so it’s clear though, that is out of two restaurants that i’ve tried. so really, it’s just better than the other one). i also appreciate that the beer just says “corona” instead of “coronita” like in spain (there was a lawsuit from another company called “corona”).

we did eventually make it to the deutz street fair, after attempting to run a few errands (aveda salon and bookshop) unsuccessfully (closed and didn’t have my book yet) and it was ok: your standard crafts stands and local shops displaying their wares on the street instead of inside their shop. they had two stages and the singer at one wasn’t too bad. we were impressed that everything was going on as planned, weather be damned. everything was equipped with heavy-duty umbrellas and there were still a lot of people browsing the stalls and “rocking out” to the bands.

what was great about it though was that we met karen and her boyfriend, max, there and got to see their apartment and hang out. i almost felt like i had friends. i had even texted her that morning to see if she wanted to meet up – i haven’t had anyone to text in months (seriously, it was my first text on my phone here)!

today though, i think i’m just going to stay nice and dry inside until i have to go to german class, as i don’t see any signs of it letting up.