Unexpected Rain

September 1, 1929 ~ At sea
Rain and lightning during the night but calm riding. At 5:30 it was raining hard and Anne was awakened by the rain coming in on her. I woke also and we got busy as the water was filling her bed. We struggled with the ports a while until we managed to close them securely. Then we started to bale the water from the protective sills with towels. We formed a brigade, I wringing towels out in the basin and Anne sopping up the water. Her bed was wet by this time but she covered it over and went to bed. Lots of water had also collected in a corner of the floor, so that Anne thought the ship had sprung a leak, but her fears were groundless.

 

February 15, 2017 ~ Doha, Qatar
We touch down in Doha into an eerie mist. The reflection of the colored skyline lights blend together in the choppy harbor. After settling in to the Saraya Corniche hotel, we walked in search of some food and felt a light drizzle on our heads. Odd, we thought, given our desert coordinates. We smile at the rain and head in to dinner.

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Sated and still jet lagged, we barely notice that an hour or two go by. It was only about two miles or so to the hotel and we didn’t feel like hailing a cab. It was a warm downpour by this point, but we simply didn’t care. It felt good to stretch after the long flight from Kathmandu. The roads were beginning to flood and we are ankle deep at points. I hike up my long dress just enough to get it out of the puddles but not so much as to show off too much skin. I had just the one outfit that was culturally appropriate for Middle Eastern dress and I couldn’t ruin it on the first night. The sidewalk ended at a relatively busy road (we took a different route going back), but we were too far to turn around. I hopped up onto the construction barrier on the side of the asphalt, treading across the top like the balance beams of my youth. We made it back a little muddy with water squishing in our shoes, but still smiling from the silly adventure and the fantastic meal in a new country.

Much to our surprise, the heavy rains persisted over night. The locals were overjoyed at this wonderful gift from above. The streets and sidewalks were now flooded and it became near impossible to walk without getting wet – same goes for getting Riyals from the ATM.

 

We didn’t realize that Doha only gets about 3 inches of rain a year and they don’t have the drains to accommodate any long stretches of precipitation. In our two days, they got about half of their yearly allotment. Perhaps I’m a rain goddess? I seem to bring rain to places that need it, and to some that maybe don’t want it as much!

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