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It finally happened: it rained in the U.A.E this weekend and I slept through the whole thing.

Granted, it was nothing like a few years ago, when the Emirates were incapacitated by a devilish deluge of rain and hail. But rain in the Emirates, no matter how little, is a really huge deal!

When I woke up this weekend, there was a strange darkness blanketing the city– Twitter was buzzing with rain tweets and the ground was actually wet with puddles lining the drain-less city. Even the radio was all abuzz with people calling in to share their plans and talk about what they were doing to celebrate (yes, celebrate) the rains.

Peering out from my balcony was such a pleasure. There was a heavenly breeze sweeping across the city, the rain had washed all the sand away and the trees and plants looked green. Parked cars looked like they had just been washed and there was a palpable feeling of joy all around.

The world may watch us, rather amused by our giddiness, but when you live in a region where there’s hardly ever any rain, you really wouldn’t believe how excited we can get. Anticipation normally mounts hours before the actual downpour. There is longing and hope and people whisper silent prayers for some respite from the sweltering desert heat. Windows and doors are flung open in the mere anticipation of the coming showers, fresh air is such a huge blessing – such a nice change from air conditioning – and when the drizzle starts, you really feel like doing a rain dance outside no matter how childish or silly it looks.

I sat down in my balcony with a cup of coffee and I stayed there for almost an hour mindlessly flipping through the pages of Friday Magazine, my eyes glancing skywards as the grey clouds gathered above. There is so much joy to be derived from the simplest of things really. Like sitting down and watching rain clouds gather or just basking in the beauty of nature.

I’m so sad I missed it, but the afterglow was just as special as the rain itself. If it rains again in the next few days, I know I’ll run downstairs and try and enjoy it like it’s meant to be enjoyed. If it doesn’t rain again…Oh well, there’s always next year.


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