By Vita Forest
“There is no bad weather, only the wrong clothing.” Old Scandinavian saying.
I used to live with a cyclist who followed weather updates quite religiously. He would check the weather app at regular intervals to see whether the storm clouds were indeed moving in, or if he should set his alarm for the 5am bike ride. For some people (and maybe some activities) a spot of rain is a deal breaker. Saskia is not one of those people.
Saskia is one of the few people I know who does not change her plans if it’s raining. I like this attitude. Here are some of the things we would have missed out on if we hadn’t stepped out in the rain:
- striding over the Sydney Harbour Bridge at night, clad in our raincoats, with the lights of the city casting streaky reflections on the footpath. We stepped through the deserted streets of The Rocks, stopping for a cuppa in a warm cafe on George Street before doing it all again in reverse.
- walking from Minnamurra to Bombo along a section of the Kiama Coastal Walk while storm clouds boiled above us. If we had been put off by the forecast, we wouldn’t have seen the flock of galahs that wheeled through the sky, changing from pink to grey as they circled overhead. I wouldn’t have collected the handful of smooth rounded rocks that sit so nicely in the palm of your hand and that now parade in a line across the back of my bathroom sink. We wouldn’t have happened upon the surreal basalt landscape of Bombo headland, or climbed the rock pillars lining the sea wall or sat on the edge of the rocks with the sea smashing in.
- exploring Minnamurra rainforest from under the shelter of umbrellas through a drizzly rain that drifted through the light fog in the canopy. Raindrops fell percussively on leathery fig leaves and sped down vines speckled with fungi, before finally hitting the ground. We stopped and watched a lyre bird as it worked on a nest, scrambling up and down the slope to find just the right twigs for the job. Actually, I think rainforests look their best in this weather, the light is soft, the leaves glow greenly and everything is glistening. You just need to watch out for leeches…
- having a birthday picnic at Balmoral beach, sitting cross-legged on the end of the wooden jetty at Balmoral Baths beneath a big golf umbrella. The rain kept the crowds away from our viewing platform over the bay, the boats gently clinking in the breeze as we sipped our tea poured from a thermos and ate lemon cake.
So next time it rains, I’d really advise you to be like Saskia and put on a good raincoat and go out in the weather. You never know what you might discover.