You can see it coming long before you hear the first clap of thunder. One minute you are gazing across the Golfo Dulce at the outlines of the hills behind Golfito. You avert your eyes for just a moment and when you look again, the hills are shrouded in mist. The sky across the bay darkens and you hear thunder far in the distance. Here in Puerto Jimenez the sun may be shining, but once you've been here awhile, you know it is the “prelude” to a Tropical Downpour.
The interval between the first clap of thunder and the first drops of water may be an hour or more, but in form true to life here on the OSA, there is no need to hurry. You keep doing what you're doing. A periodic glance or perhaps the sound of thunder just a bit louder as it rolls across the bay toward shore lets you know the arrival is near. Then, suddenly it seems, the blue skies are gone and the same mist that magically shrouded the hills around Golfito envelops Puerto Jimenez as the first drops of rain fall gently around you.
Those few quiet moments of raindrops are not the beginning of a gentle spring shower, for this is not your garden variety rain. If you don't like to be drenched to the very core of your being, those drops are your signal to take cover. Within moments the heavens open and the sound of the rain on the clay tile roofs equals an entire symphony orchestra made up of Timpani Drums. Conversation comes to a halt. The rain hits railings so hard it looks like they are on springs. Waterfalls are created from the leaves on the palm trees. Time stands still. There is nothing but the sound of the rain.
After a while, the intensity of the rain settles into a constant drum with a few crescendos here and there. The air cools with the breeze of the rain. Almost, as if you are getting a massage, you feel your shoulders relax. There is just enough sound to clear your head of any thoughts. Your eyes feel heavy and the next thing you know, your rain symphony becomes an afternoon lullaby.
Rain is an affirmation of life on the OSA. Without the rain, we wouldn't be living in one of the most biologically intense places on earth. Rain cools the intense heat of the day and settles the dust. It cleans the air and clears the mind. Rain lets you pause; it reminds you to breathe.
As the rain softens their tone and softens their sound, the sky lightens. A few of the braver birds’ test flight. People begin to move about again. Dogs bark, birds sing, and the rain suddenly ends. In those first few moments there is once again a moment of silence as life gears up to move forward again.
Remember to move slowly though, this IS the OSA after all!