What a Difference the Sun Makes

Photo credit: nuchylee at freedigitalphotos.net

Photo credit: nuchylee at freedigitalphotos.net

I am not one to make a big deal about the weather. It comes and goes, and except for when it’s really cold (or really hot), I don’t say much about it. Well until this year. This is my fifth winter in Taiwan, and while I have nothing on my friends and family back in the States in terms of weather to complain about, I have not been happy about the rain rain rain rain rain rain.

Central heat is not common in most apartments (or at the university where I teach), so when our cold spell stretched on and on this year, coupled with the rain rain rain rain rain, I thought I might go a little mad. Still the calendar said it would eventually pass, and it wouldn’t be long before I could trade my complaining for the hot, HUMID days that lie ahead. But in the meantime, I was getting a little tired of wearing fingerless gloves while I typed, and wearing three layers of clothing while huddled near the heater. But that wasn’t the only problem. The long, wet spell created another problem–laundry.

In our apartment, we have a washing machine, but no clothes dryer. No problem! We hang our clothes out on the balcony, as is the norm around here (at least for those without a clothes dryer). To give you an idea, we just had such a long spell where Dave was unable to hang out laundry that he almost broke down and carried it the two blocks for a coin operated dryer.

But what’s really been bothering me the last few weeks is that whenever I take the bus to go downtown for my exercise routine at Curves, I’ve had to deal with the wet weather. The cold I can “usually” handle, but I was getting so sick of the rain. You’ll understand more when I start posting what sidewalks in Taiwan are like. Today, after a day of classes and office hours, I headed to Curves. I planned to catch the shuttle and walk the five blocks from the train station downtown to Curves. I’ve done it several times. In the rain.

But today, I ended up on the wrong bus. (An occupational hazard of not reading Chinese.) To be fair to me though, the bus I got on was in the same place where I’ve caught the right bus several other times. But no matter. The one I ended up on was going to the train station in Taipei not Taoyuan. Luckily, I found out before we left the university premises, and the driver let me off.

I caught a local bus and settled in. Then I noticed that although it was 5:00 in the afternoon, the sun was still shining. Wait! The sun was shining! Actually, I remembered noticing the sun at 8:00 this morning, when I walked into my classroom. I’d sort of forgotten what it was like to teach with the sun out. The sun changed everything today! It was brighter even sitting in my office this afternoon. So when the local bus dropped me off at the stop closer to Curves, I walked there without having to worry about slipping on wet surfaces, or dodging raindrops, or wrestling with an umbrella. And because it had been a week since I’d been downtown at that time, it wasn’t gloomy. It wasn’t even dusk. We’ve turned a corner. When I get downtown late Monday afternoon, it will be brighter. Even if it rains–heaven forbid–at least it won’t be dusk on top of it.

What a difference a week makes. Even with a few glitches in my day, the difference between tonight and last Monday is amazing. Even my workout was much more pleasant as a result. Bring on the sun!

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21 comments on “What a Difference the Sun Makes

    • Thanks for stopping by. There have been times we’ve desperately needed rain here as well. I remember my second year here, water was turned off for a couple days to conserve. So I wouldn’t wish that upon anyone. I guess sometimes the weather bothers me more than at other times. Luckily, it changes. And more luckily, so do I. haha

  1. We have just come out of a ridiculously wet spell over here in the UK, floods like never before, so you have my sympathies. For the first time this weekend we got two days in a row of sun.. we felt like we were totally spoiled! However… rain is set to return this week. But well done on your exercise regime. I managed to convince my knees that it was okay to cycle to work today. 🙂

    • Now that a little time has passed, I really have to say that I think it’s the chill that goes along with the rainy season that really gets to me. I don’t like that it’s impossible to ever get really warm unless you crawl into bed with a mountain of covers. But the coldest days are in the past, and pretty soon, I’ll be moaning about how hot and humid it is. 😉

    • Rain is nice sometimes on its own merits. I was just frustrated by the days and days and days of it. But it’s good that we don’t have to deal with drought this year. Hope things improve where you are. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Deb- I can’t find your about page —— so this is for you since you know I don’t do these anymore – paying forward. – you can pass it on also:
    I have nominated you for the Shauny Award for Blogging Excellence. I hope you will accept and repeat the process in nominating excellent blogs that you follow. If you don’t accept awards, please pass it on to a friend who does. Please visit the page below for the directions. Keep up your excellent blogging!
    http://talesalongtheway.com/2014/03/19/the-shauny-award/

    • Thanks, Cate! I stopped doing rewards a few months back, since I need to focus on writing content — when that happens (not so much lately) — but I appreciate the nomination. In other news, if you’re interested in trying to increase readership and motivate yourself to do a little more blogging, I’m participating in a blog hop and need to have three people join me. Would you be interested? I can send you more information. 🙂

    • It’s funny, sometimes it’s soothing in a way, but not when it goes on for days and days. The other thing is that without central heat, I can’t get rid of that chill that accompanies it. It doesn’t get to freezing here, but it gets within ten degrees on occasion, and space heaters just don’t do it at that point. But interestingly, I always make it. That’s why the sun was so great this time. I was really ready. Now if I have a bad mood, I’ll have to find something else to blame it on. 😉

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