Marilyn Englander: A Hike On A Rainy Day

The season’s first blessed rains arrived last weekend, so Marilyn Englander made good use of the rainy day. She took a hike.

Where I grew up, it rained all the time. A sunny day was a miracle. It felt like a crime to stay indoors when the sun was out.

By now I’ve lived in California most of my life, but until this fall, I never thought I’d change my attitude about the weather. I still worship sunshine. Then, as September turned to October and October to November, weeks slogging by dry, cloudless, I’d scan the skies morning and night in hope of plump, wet clouds. No luck.

So when the first rain arrived, I couldn’t contain my joy. It was chill and blustery, the warm house much more inviting than the outdoors. My instinct was to stay in and make chocolate chip cookies. Instead, when my grown-up daughter called to ask if our hiking date was still on despite the wet, I pivoted and said, “Of course.”

We drove to the mountain COVID-style, masked up with the windows opened wide, cold wind whipping our hair. By the time we parked at the trailhead, we needed to hike briskly to get warm again.

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