Monday, May 9, 2011

Banal Talk

I remember being in a country (I won’t say which), waiting at a bus stop and listening to strangers exchange banal chitchat about the weather (everybody was just agreeing about how cold it was). It occurred to me then that I myself never bothered much about the weather (unless there was something extraordinary going on – coming from the tropics, it’s pretty much just wet or dry and the temperature doesn’t do anything drastic as a rule). Anyway, I thought it was funny, because at my lamest (I was young and frequently snide, even in my thoughts), I would have something better to discuss than the weather. I thought you couldn’t get smaller talk than that. So, a decade later, I found myself going on and on about the weather. First, I was whining incessantly about how hot it was. And then, wait, viola! A rain shower, which turned out to be a true-blue tropical storm. It turned from oppressively hot to refreshingly cool overnight with the skies gray and absolutely raining pitchforks. In church last Sunday when the rain was new and still gathering steam, the kids gazed out the window and just watched the rain fall. It was a sight – just a long row of them watching the wet world outside, like the rain was a curiosity, something alien, “What be this wet stuff falling from the heavens?” The recent scorching heat must have purged their memory of cooler weather. This morning, the power went out at about 6am. Mark and Marguerite didn’t even notice that the AC had stopped. The blankets stayed on. With our Discount Blinds down and the day quite gray, we could’ve stayed in bed indefinitely. This is great sleeping weather. Of course, we don’t want the rain too severe that it floods places (which this typhoon actually did in some areas of the country). Anyway, it’s been a weird summer. The weather was really much more unpredictable than usual.

4 comments:

Sharkbytes said...

Those kinds of storms are fascinating unless you have to be out in them

spinninglovelydays said...

I know! I was caught in plenty of them as a college student...

I Love-Hate America by Bing said...

To us Filipinos, talking about the weather can be banal because there's really nothing to talk about our "predictable consistent" weather and we find it superficial when other people talk about it.
I think it's quite relative. Now, after more than a decade living in the US, I now understand that talking about the weather is actually more than it is----the weather ,so unpredictable in such countries like the USA, can affect everything----our routines, our moods, our goals, our sentiments, and a host of other things that can be affected by the condition of the day.
It could be a small talk because it's the easiest to talk about because every person we meet see and feel the weather.

spinninglovelydays said...

The weather has gotten much more interesting of late anyway.