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2006 05 16
Weather Report Part 2
By Lian Chang


Monday, May 8, 2006. Sunny, a high of 23°C. A repeat of last Monday: a brilliant, naïve, exuberant summer day. All is forgiven.

Tuesday, May 9, 2006. A few clouds, a high of 22°C. I wake up to a yellow sun, stretch in bed, and lazily rub my eyes. Game over. There must have been some pollen on my fingers because my eyes puff up and narrow into ridiculous slits through which I can barely see. I check the mirror and see a racist caricature of my Chinese self.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006. High humidity, fog, a high of 19°C. Another blank day.

Thursday, May 11, 2006. No rain, a high of 24°C. The morning is humid, and I fear afternoon rain, so I swallow some antihistamines and boot it to the library, where I march about photocopying articles and locating 60 lbs of books to bring back, swinging slowly, dangerously from the handles of my bicycle. The books look at me defiantly from my desk. I stare back. I fully intend on reading them all by my deadline at the end of May. That could have gone on all afternoon, with much posturing and little reading, had the weather and a telephone call not saved me. I tear myself from the books. The humidity clears and the sun settles into an expansive, generous trajectory. Inspired by a religious fervor, I follow the sun and nap. At one point, I awake with one eye, and with one hand reach for a book (a small half-pounder, by weight roughly 1/120 of my assigned reading for the month). I read with one eye and one hand while the other half sleeps—a surprisingly effective technique. I read, I feel the sun, I watch myself sleep while fully awake. I realize that sleeping in this kind of endless afternoon sun is an almost unthinkable activity (but also the most natural thing in the world): it is to be smiled on by a serenely benevolent god while one is completely oblivious to such a profound act of grace. Outside, the sun holds on to the afternoon, while the moon is rising. Awake while sleeping, sun while moon. I have the giddy sensation of having created a snag in the ontological fabric of the universe, of being given a secret glimpse of one of the little miracles that silently hold the world together.

Friday, May 12, 2006. Rain, a high of 18°C. The forecast promised rain, 100% chance. The morning was overcast but no rain. I stare at the sky, hopeful. In the late afternoon, rain. I remember that we cannot ask for miracles.

Saturday, May 13, 2006. Rain, a high of 12°C. Not asking for miracles but it has been raining forever. (Note to self: it has not been raining forever.)

Sunday, May 14, 2006. Morning rain, a high of 20°C. After the morning rain clears, the sun deliberates with itself all afternoon: to shine or not to shine. I consult the online meteorological report, look up at the sky and wait for a decision.

Lian Chang is a PhD student in Montréal.
[email this story] Posted by Alexandra McIntosh on 05/16 at 04:49 AM

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