The day has been sunny and hot, positively burning away the hours. In a stroll down my beloved Margit Island, the shade of the trees was greatfully welcomed. It should have been a great day for the many icecream sellers of the city park, but also for the many Budapestians who crowded the cobblestoned shores of the island and the Danube, to stretch their bodies in the tiniest swimming trunks and bikinis to get a tan. A young lady in a blue bikini even decided to loose her top, not minding that she was right next to one of the most populous bridges that leads to the island. This made me remember my reservations, and how much I carry still of Costa Rica and the Latin culture. Though I admire the freedom and "mind your own business" attitude, I still tend naturally to expect a given level of decorum and self conciousness proper of the Americans.
The popular, farmer wisdom talks about the "freezing saints", refering to certain days of the calendar linked to particular days. (In Hungary calendars normally still include for each day a set of names, or just one name. These are the names that parents can give to their children, and no other, unless there's a "valid reason" to give the child another name. The names have changed and many have been added to keep up with the most popular names in the country, but also includes certain traditional names, normally related to these traditions.) The sky will cloud, the winds will speed up and the rain will pour. This could seem terrible, depressing for some, but for me it's a refreshing, wonderful event, and not only because of the drop of temperature.
Rain in Europe isn't like that in America, at least not like the kind of rain I'm used to in Costa Rica, where thick, big, loud drops drum passionately on the paviment and the roofs, flooding the streets and collapsing the sewers. I remember my black rubber boots, those humble but very efficient boots that kept my feet from the rain water the last years, allowing me to walk where others couldn't. But not here. My boots are not here, but the rain is also soft, mild, nearly dew-like. With it, as I rushed to an important appointment, I found myself praying to the rain.
Wash away the obstacles,
Wash away the problems,
Wash away the worries,
Wash away the nervousness.
Let us be like the grass
Rain upon us
Fill us with Hope
Let us grow fast and strong.
For some rain isn't anything other than an inconvenient phenomenon, an upsetting event that ruins clothes and shoes, that spoils picnics and parties and gets in the way of drying your laundry. Rain, however, it's today's continual Mana. Falling from the sky, it quenches the thirst of the land and all creatures living in and on it. It washes away the dust that the hot days have sprinkled over the world, cools down the raised temperatures and makes life possible.
The cool days and the rain is coming, and I may need the power of that prayer, of that spell again. Let's hope this rain and these freezing saints will wash away the obstacles that keep dreams from coming true and working their magic.