I danced in the rain today.

Well, more like I ran in the rain today. Not intentionally. A friend and I were out walking her dogs when it started to drizzle. Since we often walk evenings even when the skies are cloudy, we didn’t turn around because we assumed the weather would be kind. We assumed wrong.

Barely 15 minutes from home, the clouds unleashed wind and rain enough that, by the time we’d let the dogs loose in their front yard, we both looked like we’d just emerged from a swimming pool. I don’t normally like porting around an ombrello (umbrella), but I happened to carry one today because it hailed this morning. The moment I unfurled it, however, I somehow knew it was going to be a wasted effort. Between the wind flipping it upside down and the dogs tangling their leashes around us, we may as well have been umbrella-less. (Sarah, I grabbed that pink umbrella from your house. If you’re reading this, I think it’s time to retire it!) What was left to do? We ran.

We ran through the rain. We huffed and puffed, and laughed, and cursed, and laughed some more. It was liberating.

20140324-231543.jpg After some fantastic sunny days, it’s raining again. The Roman weather seems to be mirroring my mood. I’m dreading returning to reality in just over a week. Although some part of me does look forward to going home (to California), a bigger part of me is hesitant to return to some undefined gray sky looming overhead. I had never really considered my current travel escapade as an escape from anything; I’d always just thought it was me seeking more. And though a big part of me wanting to travel was, in fact, in search of something (mainly myself, now that I think about it), I’m now suspecting it was partially me running from something else. From responsibilities? From discontentedness? From life not turning out to be a fairy tale? From boredom? From routine? Perhaps some combination of the above. But one can’t run forever. And life isn’t about waiting out the storm, is it? It’s about reveling in the now, despite circumstances, and making limonata (lemonade) out of lemons. (I love lemon-flavored anything, by the way. Well…most anything.) With the abundance of lemons here in Italy, my days are certainly full of that zesty, slightly tart sweetness.

*Thank you, Vivian Greene, for such a great quote: “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”