It’s been a long winter. There were days I thought the aching cold and piles of snow would never leave. There were days I thought my blood was slowly freezing, turning to sludge in my veins. I blamed Indiana for making me soft (this is basically The South for a born Michigander), but then, without Lake Michigan’s slight warming effect, the temperatures here often fell lower than they did up in my wintry hometown.
My fiancé and I had to choose during this time where we would be moving for me to attend seminary, and we visited a school in Berkeley, where it’s spring every day. Everyone we met apologized for the rainy weather they were having, but we’d left snow for 60-degree days. Even the rain was beautiful. (Ultimately, it turns out, we’ll be moving to New York, and we’re thrilled about this, but next February may find me pining for the weather that might have been.)
Back in Indiana, an almost-nice day would pop up here and there, but it would be followed by three more days of snow or sleet or just plain cold. Like I do every winter, I began to wonder if this one might never end. I begin to wonder if it can ever be warm again, if the packed brown earth outside my door will ever turn again from its stone-hardness to something springy and aromatic.
And then, finally, it came: a few days above freezing, and then a glorious morning when I wake slowly from a deep, sound sleep to a dull, grey morning and the muffled sound of raindrops on cold, barely-April ground. In the distance, thunder rumbles.
The storm draws closer as I toast a bagel and my roommate starts the coffeemaker. She’s usually up long before I am, sometimes so much earlier that the warming plate on the coffeemaker has already gone cold and I have to microwave my morning brew, but this morning’s white noise and total lack of sunlight caused her to sleep late, and we’ll share the fresh pot together.
I work on my computer, editing documents, and I usually begin early, opening my laptop and reading through backlit Word documents. This morning is too delicious for that, though, with the steady raindrops and the occasional flash of lightning. So I leave my computer closed, and gather my bagel and my coffee and settle into the loveseat with a book. I’d started reading Divergent the night before, and it’s that kind of fast-paced easy read that is so nice to get wrapped up in now and then.
So I sit, and I read, and I eat my bagel, and I drink my coffee, and I watch the rain, and I hear the thunder. Wrapped in a blanket, still wearing my pajama pants, I think that mornings can’t get much better than this.
It’s a small moment, insignificant, but it changes the tenor of my whole day. Rainy mornings are my favorite, especially when I don’t have to wake early and hurry to get ready, when I can take my time and take a Sabbath of sorts to savor something delicious, if only for a minute.
Alissa Goudswaard Anderson (’10) lives with her husband Josh in New York City, where she is earning her Master of Divinity at General Theological Seminary. Alissa enjoys private kitchen dance parties, big Midwestern thunderstorms, and perusing other peoples’ bookshelves. For more, find her online at www.episcotheque.wordpress.com or tweet her @episcotheque.