Rain Coats

By Morf Morford
Tacoma Daily Index

In the Pacific Northwest, we love our rain. We may not always like it, but we love it.

Rain defines us and frames our existence. We live in it when it appears and we miss it when we don’t see it for more than a few days.

Sometimes we dress for the rain. But mostly we just ignore it. It’s just water after all, we tell ourselves, and besides, we won’t be out in it much.

A few of us own umbrellas. We might even use them once in a great while, but almost always just for show. It doesn’t take long to discover that umbrellas are useless, or worse, around here. Our rain almost never comes alone. Our rain is misty or sideways. Wind and umbrellas do not play well together.

And, as anyone who has lived in the Midwest or the South will tell you, we don’t know what real rain is. We have drizzle. If you want real rain, move to the Midwest or even better, Alabama or Louisiana; they both get far more rain than we get.

The Pacific Northwest rain might be nearly constant (or at least feel that way) but, for the most part it is unobtrusive. In fact it is almost comforting.

In most parts of the world rain sweeps by and the sky clears, but here the rain seems to settle over us as if it was a permanent part of the landscape. It just seems to hover over us.

It rarely rains much at one time, but it can feel endless. Sometimes we need the rain, and sometimes we don’t. But it rarely causes us harm. And it is a continual reminder that the earth is not ours– the earth and its systems will always prevail, and will endure and continue long after we and our creations are gone.

I think the rain even makes us better people; we read more books, see more movies and yes, drink more coffee than most other places in North America. We might even talk more.

We like other forms of weather, but not for long. It doesn’t need to get very hot or cold to get too extreme for us.

Unlike other forms of weather, rain demands little from us. We don’t need air conditioning or fans in the summer and we rarely shovel anything white in the winter. We just try to stay dry – but even that is not that high of a priority.

The rain comes and goes, it keeps everything green, and as much as we might complain about it, we all know that we secretly love it.