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  • Writer's pictureRosemary Lawrey

23 - Foaming at the knees

Thursday had been hot and humid again and I’d been waiting in all day for a workman who didn’t turn up again, for the fourth day running. When it reached five o’clock I decided to give up my doorbell vigil and head out for a long walk. It had started to look a bit overcast and I grabbed my brolly as a precaution. I needn’t have bothered, half-way down the street the heavens opened and I was starting to get soaked already. Convinced it couldn’t keep this up for long, I continued what was to be a seven mile walk, getting wetter and wetter under my dainty little umbrella which soon was serving more as a comforter to cling to than any protection against the rain. By the time I got to the half-way point, I noticed suds had begun to bubble out of my knees and were oozing embarrassingly down my shins. My washing machine’s rinse cycle obviously wasn’t as efficient as it could be, or perhaps its wash cycle is much more efficient than I ever imagined (its brand name does feature the word “bubble”, little did I know that the clothes would go on bubbling even after I’d dried them and put them on). Anyway, the rubbing of my knees against the sodden fabric of my trousers had worked up a fine lather. By the time I neared home, water was running in rivulets down my arms and sides too, but it was a warm and soapy shower, so not unpleasant at all. People were out swimming and speedboating. A big group of children were enjoying a game of barefoot football on the beach with their coach in the driving rain. Fish flopped about on the surface of the warm water. I guess the raindrops didn’t bother them either. Somewhere in the Solent murk, a foghorn sounded. The seagulls had gathered onto the beach and were lined up in formation like a military parade, faces to the wind, perhaps enjoying this warm freshen-up as much as the rest of us.

My picture today is a memory of that downpour, and collaged into it are some watery sketches drawn in the rain.

Note to self: use less detergent.

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