Damn you weathermen!
Lynne P, The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School
me...stuck in the rain...waiting for the tram...quite boring, really.
I hate weathermen. I hate their obnoxious haircuts and nasally voices telling you to expect, “light drizzle and breezes tomorrow”; when the reality is in fact, a small monsoon -cross -cyclone. So standing in the torrential downpour, hair plastered to my face, uniform sticking very unflatteringly to my thighs and water pooling in my shoes, I could only blame the weatherman. It’s his fault that I didn’t bring an umbrella (because really, who classifies light drizzle as rain?), his fault that Mtram is too cheap to provide decent tram shelters for us poor, sodden, umbrella-less fools, his fault that I am goddamn soaked to the skin and probably going to catch pneumonia. The only thing I can’t blame him with is the actual rain itself, that, I put squarely on the rather formidable shoulders of God.
Speaking of God, what did I do to be persecuted thus? Persecuted how? I’ll tell you how…
I am waiting for a tram in the rain. Not your garden variety pitter-patter on the rooftops rain, but “oh my, where’s the ark” rain? I am already drenched, my hair is dripping down my neck and my blazer is soaked, giving off an offensive scent that smells suspiciously like wet dog. My dress is clinging to my legs, and I realize with horror that the paper thin, tea towel patterned dress has become very transparent. I tug at my jumper self-consciously and look around nervously, hoping fervently that no one is leering at me.
Shoving hair away from my face, I peer into the gap between the two businessmen in front of me (both sport black umbrellas, one wears a cheap watch and the other cheap aftershave) and I try to make out the lights of an oncoming tram in the darkness.
Yes, I see it! Hurrah! With a flurry of opening doors and closing umbrellas the mob begins to shove their way onto the tram. I, seasoned veteran at this, fight and push my way on with the best of them, brandishing my schoolbag like a weapon and giving death glares to all who dare oppose me. Finally, I am at the front and just about to squeeze on when something, a prickle at the back of my neck urges me to turn around.
And I see her. A pathetic, shivering, old woman who (at the risk of sounding cliché) looks like she is going to blow away with the next breeze. She probably watches the same weather channel as I do, as she is conspicuously umbrella-less (damn those weathermen!) and looks terrible. I mentally sigh as my conscience goes to war with my sense of self- preservation. ‘You can’t let her freeze to death’, one hisses. ‘It’s survival of the fittest’, the other bellows, ‘and look at her, she’s pathetic!’
‘Stay on the tram’, he coaxes.
‘And risk your soul?’ the other huffs. ‘ Face it, she could probably die standing out there, and you’d have the guilt for the rest of your life. And what if she was your grandma huh? Would you want your grandma dead because some selfish apathetic brat couldn’t spare her a place on the tram?’ By now my conscience has risen to a dull roar, and I give in. Stepping off the tram with a resigned sigh, I beckon her to take my place. As the other commuters begin muttering venomously, I give them a look cold enough to cause frostbite. When the doors shut, the old lady smiles at me gratefully, and I feel 10 feet tall.
Suffice to say, the feeling does not last long. As the tram ambles away, a gusty wind blows up against my wet clothes making a shudder pass through every inch of my damp skin. And within moments, I am back to feeling sorry for myself and damning all weathermen to Hell.