With the sound of the marching band in the background, the green forests encapsulate the chorus of birdsong echoing and reverberating across the river. The bright warm sun disappears and the fresh wind grows thick, an overcast spell bewitches the discoloured sky. I feel the first few cold raindrops fall on to my bare arms before anyone even realises the heavens have collapsed around us.
Kids pedalling bicycles ride by to places I do not know, a grey haired woman in her 60s dressed in red gently ambles up the paved path, a mother presses her hood against her hair as the respective father smoothly pushes a pram towards the outskirts of the sculptured landscapes.
I think about this, I am a good distance from the hotel: imminent shelter is not feasible. Having left my cardigan and umbrella at the suite, it’s a brave decision. I will wait it out, let the competition between the rain and myself commence. I am surely going to win, I have every faith. My name does not mean lightning for nothing.
I continue to sit on the wooden bench. Slightly shivering and goose pimply, the breeze turns me into tiny icicles, one bone at a time as if enjoying the game. The raindrops are dripping thicker, quicker, heavier. Wetter.
A blob of rain stabs my eyeball and my eyelashes mesh together in that instant of unexpected ouchness. I stand, evaluating my surroundings, unsure which way to turn, looking for somewhere drier before I am stranded in a storm depending upon the offensive tactics of the downpour. I capture a view of green trees and with a quiver in my skin, I stroll towards the forestry hoping God’s tears would soon cease, as if to stop crying for me was not too much to ask.
The wind flaps and wraps my dress around my legs, I wish I had wings, soar high, and away. From my grounded position beneath the leaves, I see the entire sky is grey, a path stretches out infront of me, a public secret garden. With my back leaning on the conveniently placed boulders, I whisper a prayer into the outness, only God can hear me.
The trees rustle offering protection as if promising me this rain is just temporary. My bare arms are soaked through to my constricted veins that are trying to contain a constant core temperature. The wind takes captives and only worsens my shivers, the shaking leaves worry me that little bit more as if they too have lost their steadfast faith from only moments ago. I spot a blue patch of sky suddenly, Come this way before the rain besieges me.
pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter, pitter-patter
I tread the path sheltered by the tall trees and head for my blue piece of sky as wind turns the calm rain into a thousand drawing pins scratching my wet skin. I gaze out again towards the river, I will not surrender wind, keep trying, I have faith. I do not know why, but I do.
The sun peeps from behind the clouds and the overlooking trees above me, the rays catch a frown and a smile is born. I don’t feel peace that often but with the sun warming me in the rain in a park in the middle of Minsk, I feel it.
I sit, absorbing. All the elements inside of me. The rain forgets its purpose, and so do I.