I love travelling. I love seeing new places, meeting new people, getting excited about places I had never even thought of and then quickly become obsessed with them. I always think that anything seems possible when you are travelling, you can be anyone, achieve anything. The reason I mention this is I don’t want you thinking that I’m not appreciating this travel experience but what I would like is for the weather God’s to THROW ME A FRICKING BONE…
I’m not quite sure when what I can only describe as ‘the curse’ began. I remember enjoying warm balmy holidays in France as a kid without having to run for any kind of rain cover. However, something has happened. A few times I’ve put it down to bad luck; all day rain in Thailand when it was supposed to be a short shower – unfortunate, 5 days of rain in the Maldives in the sunny season – an unlucky end to a honeymoon.
It’s when the sentence starting with ‘we haven’t seen rain like this…’ keeps being uttered in my presence that I begin to think I have more of a controlling force over the weather than perhaps I should. Some recent classics: a trip to Stockholm with a bestie saw 3 days of torrential rain and the urgent need for the purchasing of new shoes and socks. On meeting some locals that night in a bar we were informed ‘we haven’t seen rain like this in 46 years’. A trip to Iceland earlier this year, where don’t get me wrong, I was not expecting 30 degrees and sun, but crisp clear snow filled days were more on the cards. It started well but within two days the snow has melted and the rain came. Then the fatal words ensued ‘we haven’t seen rain like this for 15 years’… weird. The are many more examples but the next two scenarios have cemented for me that I am a weather changer and planted the seed that maybe I should let the government know and perhaps become some kind of rain envoy bringing relief to drought hit countries.
A classic example was last year in Rwanda. We arrived in the country to, let me say it again TORRENTIAL rain. The rain was gushing down hills – all thousand of them. The taxi driver was horrified for us, he felt bad we were arriving to such bad weather telling us ‘we haven’t seen rain like this…ever’. Of course.
The real clincher was travelling through Kerala in India when we stayed with a guy who apologetically explained that a few times a day there would be power cuts as the power was hydroelectric and they had not had rain for many months. Jokingly I assured him it would all be fine and I would bring him rain. Jokingly… The next day we awoke to, you guessed it, torrential rain. We met the guy at breakfast who kept shaking his head repeating ‘bloody hell, bloody hell’. I’m not sure whether he was happy or scared. We left quickly.
So as I sit here in a bar in Valparaiso, Chile with sodden wet jeans watching the rain hammer down the hills outside, I do wonder whether it is time to accept the sun is avoiding my pale skin out of a kindness I am yet to understand or it’s time to commercialise my talents. Or, it’s all Jamie’s fault.