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No Rain, No Rain!

The Experimental Farm, flooded, Ottawa, May 2017

At first, rain was good news. Non-frozen water falling from the sky meant temperatures were going up and we were transitioning into spring. Besides, rain eats through ice and helps make the last mountains of dirty snow and salt disappear.

But it’s been raining a lot, way too much.

I’m sick of it.

In Ottawa, we usually have two kinds of rain: the dreaded freezing rain during winter and short but massive thunderstorms during summer. However, it’s not an overcast city with constant drizzle. Usually, it rains for a bit, then skies clear and it stops.

These days, I can’t for the rain to stop—it just doesn’t. There is light rain if you’re lucky, torrential downpour if you’re not and that’s it. The “dry” option is gone.

Tonight, I officially ran out of dry shoes. My sneakers are soaked (a fish could live in there), my blue boots turned dark blue and even my rain boots are wet inside—I suspect there is a hole somewhere in the sole, this is what happens when you buy cheap Walmart shoes. I went through two pairs of jeans, two pairs of socks and I hung my “waterproof” winter jacket to dry in the basement. It’s not warm enough to wear sandals and a light raincoat and umbrellas are no help with this much rain.

There’s nothing is more uncomfortable than a wet pair of jeans and soaked socks. The cold fabric sticks to your skin and it feels like you’re stepping on a wet sponge.

“What don’t you go take a shower?” Feng suggests when I step it, dripping water at the doorstep.

“I’m gonna change clothes but I’ll take it later tonight. I need a break from water,” I sigh.

The minute I step out, I know I’ll eventually go from dry to wet. Sometimes, it’s almost imperceptible because my coat protects me for a while, but then, I realize moments later that I’m a rain-soaked mess.

And if the downpour doesn’t get you wet fast enough, cars splashing through the puddles will. “Asshole!” I yelled to the black Honda Civic who drove full speed centimetres from the edge of the sidewalk, spraying pedestrians—myself included—and getting us coated with muck. Or sometimes, you just step in a deeper-than-it-looked puddle. Even the most waterproof footwear sees its properties challenged in water-filled potholes.

Ottawa isn’t a city where you can find shelter easily when needed. We have wide and long roads and streets and few bus shelters. This isn’t France where you can duck into a store of a coffee shop.

But above all, rain is depressing. Days are chilly, grey, windy and I can’t go out as much as I want to so I’m getting cabin fever. I know some people say water is good for the trees, the lawn—I’m sorry but at this stage, the environment is just developing a drinking problem.

I’ll celebrate when warm, sunny days are back. It’s about time!

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