I feel as if the dry season has stretched a little this year. Weeks and months creep past, with hardly a drop of rain. Showers which we can mark in the calendar. Yes, that was the week it rained, we remember. A January rainstorm and an April downpour. Aberrations, punctuating the increasingly stifling heat building around us. We start to dream of rain, to imagine we hear drops falling. The wind rises, whispering promises of rain soon, soon. My heart soared two weeks ago, on a stuffy Saturday afternoon when I heard that unmistakable sound of large, bulging raindrops falling outside. Raindrops I could count, and see their mark on the ground briefly before they were swallowed by the parched ground. There is only one thing to be done on hearing this sound, and catching the scent of fresh rain in the air. Before I know what has happened, I am in the garden, face upturned and arms outstretched, welcoming those first delicious rains onto my face, smiling and laughing like a child. The shower might be brief but so refreshes the mind and body and sharpens the anticipation of the rains.
The rain came again on Tuesday, hidden while I was inside the airport building and unseen until boarding. Such a sense of disappointment and being cheated, at not being able to watch or feel the rain as it swept in. The rain on a runway is not the rain I had been dreaming of, nor the rain streaked horizontally across the cabin windows in the aircraft. Nor the dramatic rain storms underneath while we were kept on hold above our destination. It might have been “not quite the right kind of rain” but it was a renewed promise of monsoon.
It has rained every afternoon since then. Bulky clouds with attitude gathering in the sky, thunder rumbling and cracking, spirited breezes materialising from nowhere and rains teeming down. Alongside a renewed energy and exuberance within each of us. The frogs are wakening and critters being washed from their hiding places. The landscape will quickly change.
And so too does my image for now. Over this dry season, I have become increasingly fascinated with the play of light, of shadows and of reflection as I struggle to get to know my camera, and try to capture glimpses of magic I see around me.
I am also a little naughty with the concept of “selfie” photography and have my own version which protects my privacy yet places me in my environment. The “Shadow Selfie” is what I call it. Now that the rains are moving in I am sure there will be less shadow and I have therefore chosen an image which comes from this very special time when the season starts to turn, and the trees come to life with their array of colour. I particularly love the jacaranda and could not resist a “shadow selfie” under a blossoming jacaranda tree as I paused on my cycle home from my early morning swim.