• Costa Rica PorchIt’s rained every day since we arrived at the base of the Volcan Arenal. It’s the end of the rainy season in this Costa Rican rain forest. It’s pouring as I write.

    I’ve heard more than one dumb American tourist complaining about how the wet conditions have complicated their adventures, how the cloudy shroud has dissapointed them, how the locals have acted nonchalant. “Just makes it authentic,” I’ve been replying.

    Personally, I like the rain, even as it falls on my vacation. Freezing rain cost me my first car and a healthy back, but it has always been the soundtrack of romance for me. I wrote my wife poems and stories about it when we were dating. Married, we’ve made love to it—both from inside an open window and out on the balcony.

    I loved rain before I loved college girls. I used to play in the rain in our Queenstown front yard, running and sliding and tossing the football. My college roommate and I earned reprimand for playing in the rain-soaked winds of Hurricane Georges. I almost always feel like writing or relaxing or drinking hot cocoa when the drops slap the roof or tap the windows. Rain hypnotizes me, makes me pause.

    Tonight, from within the largest hot tub I’ve ever seen, I watched the splashes on the slate path and the steamy water. Little explosions seemed so simple and so creatively complex. I wondered if God made rain ricochets like snow flakes: no two the same. I thought about how brief the life of a raindrop must be and how their short life must measure our lifespans to God.

    Somewhere in there Crystal brought up the whole family-starting topic. I stared into the rain to escape the debate. I don’t want kids, at least not today.

    I used to want kids—back when I expected little from my 60-80 years. Now that I’ve got adventure and freedom and balance, I can’t envision a different life. I’m content. I like where I am, where I’m going. I have a circle of true friends, a full set of investment-needing siblings, and a readily-naked wife. I’ve got flexibility to help people in my life without indentured responsibility. My business can make larger profits by following my clients’ schedules instead of a toddler’s.

    Like the inconvenienced Texans on the zip line platforms, I’m wrapped up in my expectations, my comfort. The rain of children that so many others love to drink just gets in my way. While so many long for baby showers, I feel guilty for enjoying my undreamed sunshine. I’m frustrated at the deluge of pressure to have kids, to want kids, to stop being a kid.

    I distract myself from this climate under the temporary shelters of work and writing, church and trips. But I can’t escape. The terms of “time clocks” and true love aren’t negotiable. I’ll have to drop the umbrella soon.

    All that’s left to decide is galoshes or bare feet?

    This entry was posted on Monday, December 10th, 2007 at 11:00 pm and is filed under Random Acts of Ryan. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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