The First Rain

By Taufiq Affandi

I love the fragrance of wet soil after the first rain. There is something mythical about it.

It was still dark when I realized that the weather was smoother than it used to be. I was awakened for fajr prayer and witnessed amazing scenery beside my bed. It was raining out there. It was no dream. It was real.

After fajr prayer, the sun rose and… unlike the other day, I saw everything in their fresh color. Sands, flowers in the garden of my apartments, and even buildings looked fresh. The first rain brought something very delightful for the day.

It reminds me of my home…

I come from a remote town in Java Island, Indonesia. In my town, the weather forecast is not that important. We are almost sure that we will have rain for half a year and no rain for another half. During rainy days, clouds never seem to disappear. It gives a warm morning, and a cool noon. Warm morning? Yes, it feels so warm in our heart. It feels like you awake in a fresh day where you know you will find the smile in faces of everyone. It is not the day where you worry about your exam, your papers, your tasks, your chores, or any burden of life. It is just a day for you to smile. It is just a warm day hugging you in serenity.

I am staring at the sky of Qatar today. The sky is grey. It is entirely covered with clouds. Light rain falls calmly. And I feel really close with everyone I love in home town. The sky is just so similar with the sky of my town. I feel not separated from them by 8 hours flight. I feel that I just stay in another side of the town where I can easily walk home in ten minutes.

People in my home town love to celebrate the first rain in the year. They do not celebrate it with glamorous festivity. They celebrate it by deepest gratitude to God. Thanking God for showering their farm with His blessings. Thanking God for making their farming land resemble a little piece of paradise. The first rain releases any worry from their hearts… The first rain brings tranquillity to them.

For kids in my home country… the first rain is the magical day. It gives you chance to play out there when the rain are falling heavily. You might catch cold. But you don’t care; it doesn’t happen every day. The first rain is a chance in a year. A little bit worried parents will ask their children to use umbrella or wear rain coat while playing outside. But they won’t forbid you to enjoy the prettiness of the rain. They won’t.

And for gloomy hearts… it washes all heats in hearts. They write poems and exchange poems between them. The first rain overwhelms them with inspiration that they cannot bear the temptation to write and share it to the beloved one. They wish the time stay still. They read their poems with ecstasy while the sound of the rain in their soil-baked-roof… and the soft touch of wind in their thin glass windows create an ambience of harmony.

The rain today flies me to a spiritual journey where I am drowned in a deep feeling of peace and bliss. I wish everyone feel the same like I do. This feeling is too beautiful to be felt alone.

Addel Hall, New Residence Hall, Doha, 17/11/2013

Bio: I am a poem and novel lovers. I smile and cry when I read the poem or novel I like. I love writing because it makes me feel happy and relaxed. Besides that, I also like photography. I am currently studying Islamic Finance at Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies and staying at Addel Hall.

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