This morning, I woke to thunder. The really loud kind. I’d been dreaming I was on a boat on the ocean in the middle of a storm. There was a party going on inside the cabin, but I walked out onto the deck to feel the rain on my skin. Waves came spilling up to the left side, then to the right, and the boat surged on the water. But I planted my feet firmly on the deck beneath me, steadied myself and took a deep breath.
The sound of the waves bled into the sheets of rain that poured down outside my windows when the thunder jolted me awake. Good morning, Monsoon. You are finally here.
I spent a considerable amount of time complaining about the monsoon the first time around, and last year I purposely avoided it altogether. But this year I’ve been looking forward to it. To sit on my couch and watch the sky mutate and do spinal twists over the skyline. To stand under a covered doorway and feel the intensity of the rain as it hurtles to the ground, creating rivers down the curves and rivulets of Seoul’s streets. To look down from my window and see the parade of colorful umbrellas, businessmen running with their briefcases over their heads, women their handbags.
For three or four hours, it didn’t stop. My office has a fairly spectacular view of the mountains in downtown Seoul, which makes for a pretty spectacular time-lapse movie all day long with intermittent lightning and a sky that is breathing. But our building also overlooks Cheonggyechon stream, which was far past it’s cresting point, flooding the sidewalks with water gushing from the waterfalls. This caused a stir, and the entire staff was soon plastered to the window gasping and squealing. My friend Aleuna was all fist pumps and fast-clapping hands, “I am so excited.”
It reminded me of watching storms with my mom as a kid. Hurricane? Let’s go look at the ocean. Half of Beach Street is flooded? Let’s go see!
That’s the thing about storms. They can be turbulent, a little scary, loud, wet. They ruin stuff. But sometimes they can be a thrilling jolt. And have you ever seen the color of the sun after those clouds clear?
Yesterday, I got the news I’ve been waiting all week to hear, like the sky opening up. Today it did.