Foreign Tongues

There are entire worlds in the sound of rain. For me that world is filled with white tent ceilings and gray rain flies, rhododendrons, star wars books, the plastic smell of water proof jackets, trout, the haunted, gothic oppression of an Appalachian forest canopy. It’s car rides, and dogs, and loam, and a whole tangible cascading chain of memory stitched together by a sound.



    • devin howard

      yes, its based on personal experience. Sounds, if considered contextually, have an entire contextually derived meaning. I have been camping almost everywhere you can name that is in the US, I have been inside a tent with my family in swamps, out west on multiple occasions, and i have huddled under the polyurethane protection of high tech fabrics in the appalachians with my mother my father and my brother more times than i can possibly count. Why is this important? Because after getting caught in about 100 rain storms, that pitter patter of rain drops on a translucent tent cover literally becomes a language. I can decode what the decreasing or increasing sounds of rain on a tent fly mean to a person caught in the midst of a shower on any number of locations throughout this country. It really is a language, just like coding, or medical terminology is a language. I am so well versed in mountain showers that I can predict when we can start hiking again and that is not a lie, in any way, its just fact. Of course there is a statistical element to that, I am wrong, often, but no where near how often I am right.

    • devin howard

      alright, last comment, sorry for the quasi-rants last night, I was a tad inebriated, and apparently very enthusiastic about sharing. Enjoy the sun today, if its sunny.

  1. ForeverRaucous

    Well someone was up early (or late going to bed). Glad you fully took advantage of your weekend, it seems. By the way, sometimes my name will show up as ForeverRaucous and sometimes ChasingPavements depending on whether I’m logged in or not. I just realized I didn’t clarify before that both are me.

    First of all, I apologize for your brother’s accident. Has he recovered? Is recovery possible – to the point where he can compete again? While I’ve been no stranger to devastation, I’m not sure any one incident has occurred in my life that prevented me from doing something essential to my way of being, at least on no permanent level. I can really only imagine.

    I think the reason I was so entranced by this post is because I feel the same way, although I’m not really sure I knew how to describe it until you did. For me, rain is childhood games of hide-and-go-seek with my cousins at dusk; atrocious singing on the back porch with friends who never judge; a reprieve from the scorching summer sun during countless trips to the beach; and just so many other things that I’m sure I couldn’t put into words even if I tried (you probably could though, haha. And that’s a compliment.)

    Ok, I will stop typing now as I’m sure anyone who is currently reading our rather prolix discussion about the sounds and languages of the rain is probably certain we’re on acid. But I must say, it’s kind of great to see that someone else thinks about these things too and actually verbalizes them…and very well so. Kudos to you (and your brother too for that matter).

  2. ForeverRaucous

    And I just saw your last comment. You’re a much better inebriated typer than I am. Don’t worry about the length of your post. I prefer a verbose response over the typical caveman-esque one-syllable kind.

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