Seaside rains and inland rains are generally very different. After a decade on the coast my skin has acclimatised, somewhat, and I no longer get the terrible dry cracks in my hands, akin to excema, from shielding my face at the bus stop.
The normal sort of rain here, like the wind, seems to defy gravity and come at you in a sort of horizontal fashion, full of the bracing smells of seaweed and salt. Often also full of seaweed and salt. The drops hit as if shot from an air pistol, stinging, almost slapping as if each and every one is joyously delivering a grain of sand. Seaside raindrops hit like they have a payload. The weather has no half measures here, generally speaking. Its all or nothing; glorious or hellish.
Today, however; today we had inland rain, a rare treat. Soft and salt free, smelling at first of meadows and then of nothing but clean, washed air. The kind of misty and persistent rain that soaks you to the bone with a kiss, almost bypassing the skin altogether.
We live on a hill and can usually see the rooftops a good four or five roads away, before rows of horse chestnut trees block the view of the rolling hills preceding the cliffs. If I stand on my back windowledge, I can sometimes see the tall black tornados out at sea; beautiful, tall, swirling grey dancers always in twos or threes.
Nonetheless, today we could see two roads away, at best. It was too wet to call a mist, but the whole town has spent 24 hours looking like a very soggy Brigadoon.
And thats where I live, a mongrel cross between Brigadoon, Toy Town and Walmington on Sea (which, as I've asserted before, was based on this town in the first place).
Some days, if I nipped out to the paper shop and came across Fiona Campbell making smalltalk with Big Ears and Jonesy, I don't think I'd even raise an eyebrow, except perhaps to enquire after Victor Meldrew; after all, if anyone were to really fit in down here...........