|The children were dancing in the street, the raindrops drenching their bright clothes and brown skin. They were celebrating in ecstasy, not a worry in the world. To them the rain arriving meant the plight was over, they had nothing else to cry about.
I sat on the pavement and watched, not sharing their joy. I was grown up. I knew better. The rain could just arrive now, almost showing off the damage it could do and how easily it could be forgiven afterwards. I couldn't forgive it, the very drops that had denied me the life I had dreamt of.
We had waited for the rain. When it was a day late, we didn’t realize. A week - we took no notice. When it was a month late we began to worry. We prayed to the rain Gods, and did various charms. Everything we thought could work we did. The village fortune teller said the rain would come. We had faith. But it didn't. We watched the young crops we had once loved and nurtured like our own children wilt and die. We were helpless; we were at the mercy of the rain.
I didn’t think we could ever recover from this. Would my family go hungry when our measly savings ran out? I didn’t know anything; I didn’t know what would happen to my life. The rain that brought life to the world had destroyed mine.
I was so deep in thought I didn't realize the shop keeper come up behind me. The man’s white cotton shirt was soaked in the rain and stuck to his protruding stomach. He smiled from ear to ear, another person celebrating the rain. The shop keeper didn’t depend on a crop to survive, so like the children, the rain to him meant weight of life had been lifted.
He asked me when I was going to return the small sum of money he had lent me. Even in this moment of happiness he had to think of money. We all did. At any time of the day. We would go for a wedding and wonder how much it cost, or worry about the potential work we were missing when we visited a funeral. Money was a thought we could never shake off. And at this moment I was being pressed to return money I didn’t have.
There is a limit that any man can take. And this was my limit.
It was hours before my wife and children returned from the celebrations in the street. I hung in the small cow shed for hours before they found me.
My dying thoughts were that I would come second to the rain in the talk of the village.